A Month Later and Grafton Child Still Recovering in Sick Kids from Strep A

In Editor Choice, Local

Local Health Unit Area Had One of Highest Areas in Province for Strep A in March


It’s been over a month since nine-year-old Cali Jones was airlifted to Sick Kids Hospital in Toronto was a severe case of Strep A.

The Grafton child had been sick for a few days, and her mother took her to the hospital on March 8, 2024.

It’s likely that saved the child’s life.

After seeing a triage nurse the child was rushed in for treatment and shortly after was airlifted to Sick Kids hospital with a serious Strep A (iGAS) infection.

Cali’s father Trevor said just a few days after being admitted she was stable, but not out of the woods.

The family who knew nothing about Streg A (iGAS) has learned the hard way about the deadly infection.

Cali was very much looking forward to her ninth birthday on March 13, but that all was put aside.

The family was just hoping she would survive.

Cali was sedated for weeks and had tubes everywhere. Cali was almost unrecognizable.

When she awoke, she still had a breathing tube in and couldn’t speak.

But when that was removed all the questions Cali tried her best to ask “why” and what was going on.

Cali still can’t comprehend how long and how many weeks she was sedated..

The family are extremely grateful to everyone who helped saved their daughter.

From staff at Northumberland Hills Hospital to Sick Kids and everyone in between including the ORNGE air ambulance crew.

Trevor said on Friday (April 12, 2024) that his daughter getting better everyday, but it will be a long road to recovery.

“It’s a slow process,” said Trevor, adding “she’s out of the woods now. It’s just the recovery process that will take awhile.

“She got her feeding tube out yesterday. So she is eating and drinking. All her motor skills are back except for the walking which we are working on.”

As of April 18, Cali is still in Sick Kids, recovering slowly and learning to walk.

It’s a world the family knew nothing about until her mother brought Cali to the hospital.


HKPR District Health Unit Area Was One of Highest Areas of Province in March for iGAS

Public Health Ontario issued their monthly reported about iGAS in the province and it showed the Kawartha Pine Ridge District Health Unit has one of the highest rates of confirmed iGAS in the Province.

A total of 1,186 confirmed iGAS cases were reported in Ontario between October 1, 2023 and March 31, 2024, corresponding to an overall incidence rate of 7.6 cases per 100,000 population.

There was an overall decrease in the number of iGAS cases reported in March 2024 (n=155) compared to February 2024 (n=185) (Figure 1), continuing the decline from January’s peak. The
number of iGAS cases among those under 18 years of age has remained relatively stable since declining from the peak in December 2023 (n=46) with monthly case counts ranging from 20 to
25 cases.

In March 2024, rates of confirmed iGAS cases were highest in Northwestern Health Unit, followed by Peterborough Public Health, Haliburton, Kawartha, Pine Ridge District Health Unit,
and North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit (Figure 3). Northwestern Health Unit and Hastings Prince Edward Public Health have reported the highest average monthly rates for the
season thus far.

Those 65 years of age and older reported the highest incidence rate (13.2 cases per 100,000 population), followed by those in the five to nine age group (8.9 cases per 100,000).

Compared to the 2022-23 season, the largest rate increases in 2023-24 were seen in those aged five to nine years (242.3% increase) and 10 to 13 years (135.7% increase).

The overall proportion of iGAS cases requiring hospitalization this season to date is slightly higher than the corresponding proportion for the previous season (78.2% vs. 75.7%) As of March 31, 2024, 7.3% (11/150) of iGAS cases under 18 years of years of age have had a fatal outcome reported, which is higher than the corresponding proportion for the previous season (5.0% of cases under 18 years of age). In the 2023-24 season, 11 deaths among those under 18 years of age have been reported to date, which is approximately 91.7% of the total number of pediatric deaths reported for all of the 2022-23 season (12 cases).

(HKPR District Health Unit has not issued any notice regarding Strep A)

Pete Fisher
Author: Pete Fisher

Has been a photojournalist for over 30-years and have been honoured to win numerous awards for photography and writing over the years. Best selling author for the book Highway of Heroes - True Patriot Love

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