Thirty-seven children from a South Auckland childcare centre are in quarantine and taking anti-viral treatment after a child tested positive for swine flu.
The 1-year-old boy from the Tama Ale Eleele A'oga Amata childcare centre in Papatoetoe tested positive to Influenza A (H1N1), swine flu on Friday.
His contacts who displayed flu-like symptoms were tested for the disease and all of their results were yesterday confirmed as negative.
Dr Richard Hoskins, medical officer of health at Auckland Regional Public Health, said the 37 children and 13 adults would be in quarantine while they took a course of Tamiflu.
The positive case returned from Australia on May 26 and attended the centre for one and a half days before his parents decided he was too sick and kept him home.
Sarah Farquhar, chief executive of the Early Childhood Council, warned parents of children in early childhood centres not to panic as the case would make centres across New Zealand more aware of hygiene measures.
They would be reminded of their right to keep a child from attending sessions if there were concerns about potential contact with infected people, or travel to areas where the disease was known to be spreading.
But she acknowledged that a disease such as swine flu could easily be transmitted through an early childhood centre, even though there should not be any sharing of food.
Early childhood centres range in size from about 10 to 200 children.
A Ministry of Education spokesperson said funding of closed centres would not stop immediately and some funding was available for emergency closures. If a centre closed it should immediately contact its local Ministry of Education office.
The Ministry of Health advises anyone who has returned from overseas in the past seven days and develops influenza-like symptoms to phone 0800 611 116 for advice.By Jacqueline Smith Email Jacqueline