Sore throat management in primary care


New Zealand has high rates of acute rheumatic fever (ARF). If not  prevented, the implications for a child and their whanau of this diagnosis is devastating, with monthly bicillin injections, and possible heart surgery and premature death.  

The Heart Foundation revised their guidelines in 2014 to target the individuals who are most at risk of developing acute rheumatic fever following a group A streptococcal (GAS) sore throat. 

Objectives of this course:

  • To identify those patients that are at high risk for rheumatic fever (to enable primary prevention strategies).
  • To identify those patients that are at low risk of rheumatic fever (to reduce unnecessary antibiotic use).
  • To understand the management of high risk patients –Heart Foundation NZ Sore throat guidelines.
  • To understand the management of low risk patients and the exceptions where there is an increased risk of spread of GAS.
  • To understand when household swabbing is required.


Once you have completed this short course and quiz, please click 'submit' where you will be taken to the results page. From here you can print your certificate for 1 Continuing Professional Development (CPD) hour.


This content was created by Karen N Calnan, Registered Nurse (PG DIP in Health Science in Child Health) in 2016 updated by Dr Karen Falloon PhD, MBChB, FRNZCGP for the Goodfellow Unit (2017).

The material is presented by the Goodfellow Unit (GFU), an accredited continuing medical education/ continuing professional development (CME/CPD) provider for the Royal New Zealand College of General Practitioners and functions under a tripartite agreement between the Goodfellow Foundation, the College and the University of Auckland. The Unit is located within the Department of General Practice and Primary Health Care, and within the School of Population Health.


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