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Notifiable Disease Statistics – September release

Notifiable Disease Statistics – September release

Please attribute the following statement to Public Health Unit Clinical Director Dr Virginia McLaughlin.

Gastroenteric diseases (tummy bugs) Notifications of gastroenteric diseases continue to be the most commonly notified infectious diseases in the Tairawhiti district.

With the warmer weather and the approach of summer it is a timely reminder to pay particular attention to food hygiene and food preparation practices. Remember the “four Cs” – the four simple rules to help keep you safe - Clean, Cook, under Cover and Chill.

Clean – wash your hands; wash knives and utensils and scrub chopping boards between preparation of raw and cooked foods; keep your fridge clean.

Cook – defrost frozen foods thoroughly before cooking; never leave hot food to cool for more than two hours before putting it in the fridge; cook minced meat, sausages and poultry thoroughly Under Cover – keep all foods covered in the fridge, cupboard and outdoors; keep raw meat and poultry covered and away from ready to eat food, fruit and vegetables; when cooking outdoors, ensure that all food remains covered until ready to cook or eat.

Chill – ensure your fridge is operating at a temperature of between 0 and 4oC; keep raw meats and poultry in the bottom of the fridge to ensure their juices don’t drip on to other food; keep all perishable foods in the fridge until you are ready to use them; while picnicking, keep food cool by using a frozen chilly pad; marinate food in the fridge, not on the bench.

Meningococcal Cases Three cases of Meningococcal disease were confirmed in September. This is in keeping with the epidemiology (or pattern of disease) of this infection, with increases in notifications normally seen at this time of year.

All three people with Meningococcal disease were admitted to hospital, recovered, and were subsequently discharged home.

Case 1: 8 year old male Case 2: 4 month old male Case 3: 9 month old female

Please note the notifiable disease statistics presented here are provisional and may be subject to change following laboratory confirmation.

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