A gastro bug outbreak has now impacted seven childcare centres and one school in Hastings and Napier leading to a warning from health officials.
Earlier this week, a ward at Hawke's Bay Hospital was placed into a precautionary lockdown following the spread of norovirus, a highly contagious vomiting and diarrhoea bug. The ward was still in lockdown as at Friday.
Hawke's Bay health officials are now asking people to practise good hand hygiene and stay home if feeling unwell after more reports of the vomiting and diarrhoea bug circulating within the community.
Hawke's Bay DHB medical officer of health Dr Nick Jones said within the past 24 hours Hawke's Bay's public health unit had received an additional four notifications of gastro outbreaks among childcare centres as well as one school, taking the total number of reported outbreaks in recent days to eight.
"These outbreaks are located in the Hastings and Napier districts and include a sudden onset of vomiting, diarrhoea and fever, usually lasting for 24 hours," Jones said.
"Hand hygiene is very important to prevent the spread of the bug.
"Hands should be washed thoroughly with soap and warm running water for at least 20 seconds and dried thoroughly with paper towels, especially after going to the toilet, after changing a nappy and before handling food.
"Sick people should also stay away from work, school, sport and community activities, preparing food or swimming in public pools until they are well and without diarrhoea for 48 hours."
Jones said keeping unwell children or loved ones hydrated was important.
"Anyone at home with vomiting and diarrhoea needs to stay hydrated and if symptoms don't improve, it's very important to call your family doctor or Healthline on 0800 611 116 for medical advice."
He said cleaning household items was also very important to prevent bugs spreading.
"Clean hard surfaces, toys, bathrooms and utensils as they can become contaminated with the virus. Wash dirty clothing in hot water and rinse separately from the rest of the laundry."
A ward at Hawke's Bay Hospital remains in lockdown with strict infection, prevention and control measures in place. Nine patients and eight members of staff have been affected, but there have been no new cases reported within the past 24 hours.
Meanwhile, Hawke's Bay had one further death and 270 new Covid cases yesterday.
This brought the region's total number of deaths to 19. There were also 13 people in Hawke's Bay Hospital.
Nationally there were 7800 new community cases of Covid-19, with a further 17 Covid-related deaths.