Hip-hop fever not in North

By Mike Barrington

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doctor puts a syringe in arm of children
doctor puts a syringe in arm of children

Ten people who attended the 2013 World Supremacy Battleground hip-hop competition in Sydney last month have fallen sick with measles, but Northland could escape the disease outbreak.

One of the confirmed case of measles is in Auckland and the nine others are in Turangi and Taupo.

Ministry of Health acting deputy director of public health Dr Harriette Carr said health officials were working to identify people who may have been in contact with those affected.

"Measles can be a serious disease and is easily spread to someone who is not immunised, or who has not been exposed to measles previously," she said.

However, the coaches of top Northland hip-hop dancers Kani Krew, Annalise and Hayden Wood, of Whangarei, said yesterday they were unaware of any Northlanders competing in or attending the competition in Sydney on December 7-8.

And Northland medical officer of health Dr Loek Henneveld said that as he had not been contacted by the officials identifying people at risk of getting the disease he was hoping no Northlanders were involved.

He advised people who had attended the competition and were now getting sick to seek medical advice.

Measles symptoms can include fever, runny nose, and sore watery red eyes that last for several days before a red blotchy rash appears.

Because measles could be easily spread it was important that people contacted the Healthline 0800 number or rang their doctor first so their symptoms could be initially assessed without risk of infecting others in a GP waiting room or hospital emergency department.

Dr Henneveld said the measles outbreak emphasised the need for people to get fully immunised. A publicly-funded vaccination is available via GPs.

- NORTHERN ADVOCATE

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