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Public Health England. (2019) Wound infection. London: Public Health England.

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Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus or “Staphaureus”) and Streptococcus pyogenes (commonly referred to as Group A Streptococcus or GAS) are bacteria found in the nose, throat, skin, groin or anal area. People may carry these bacteria and have no symptoms of illness. However, infection can occur when these bacteria enter the body via a wound (including a drug injecting site), sore or a break in the skin. The infection can be caused by a person’s own bacteria or bacteria acquired from someone else or from the environment including through contact with contaminated surfaces and objects like soft furnishings, bedding or towels. These bacteria can be passed from person-to-person through direct contact or through breathing in respiratory droplets from someone carrying the bacteria, as well as through sharing drug paraphernalia (such as injecting equipment, spoons, filters, pipes to smoke drugs etc). Drugs or their wraps can also be contaminated with bacteria.

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