1491728715985 - Auckland typhoid outbreak ‘may have plateaued’

Auckland typhoid outbreak ‘may have plateaued’

The Auckland church affected by a fatal typhoid outbreak has agreed to work with health officials.

The number of confirmed cases of typhoid in the Super City remains at 18 — that number has not changed for three days. However, two unconfirmed cases are being investigated. 

One Auckland woman died as a result of the disease on Tuesday last week. Her church family slammed the Auckland Regional Public Health Service (ARPHS) for the way it handled the crisis.

But at a meeting on Sunday, the two parties agreed on a way to support those affected. 

READ MORE: * Six food handlers in close contact to typhoid patients stood down * Church hits out at health authorities as number of typhoid cases hits 18 * Family not told loved one had died from typhoid for a week, family spokesman says

ARPHS answered questions on the outbreak, and provided information on testing and prevention.

Family spokesperson Jerome Mika said he was “very positive” about the plan going forward.

“Many of the community’s fears have been put to rest, and there is strong commitment on both sides to work together.”

Meanwhile, ARPHS public health physician, William Rainger, said the service had gained a “deeper understanding” of the family’s concerns. 

“I hope we have been able to reassure the community that typhoid is a very treatable disease, that this outbreak is under control, and the risk of new cases is low,” Rainger said.

The service believes current data shows the outbreak “may have plateaued.”

Typhoid has a typical incubation period of 8-14 days but incubation can last up to 80 days.

This means cases may emerge over the course of several weeks.

What is typhoid?

* An infectious bacterial fever. It is rare in New Zealand, with about 40 known cases a year. * Most New Zealand cases have been caught during travel overseas, especially in tropical countries.  * Typhoid symptoms include a high fever developing over several days, as well as headaches, general weakness and muscle aches. Stomach pain and constipation are also common but some people get diarrhoea. * Anyone with those symptoms should see their doctor or an after-hours clinic, or contact Healthline on 0800 611 116.