Hawke's Bay doctors say the finding of six cases of Covid-19 in Stratford just over a week after a positive wastewater test should serve as a timely reminder of the ongoing risk of cases in our region.
The Ministry of Health announced on Friday that Covid-19 was not detected in samples collected in Gisborne and Napier on November 10.
It follows no detections in these areas from samples taken on November 8.
However, Covid-19 had been detected in the wastewater system in Taupō, the ministry announced on Friday.
Hawke's Bay District Health Board medical officer of health Bridget Wilson said people with cold or flu symptoms should still get tested, even if their symptoms are very mild.
People who had travelled to an alert level 3 region recently should also get tested, even if they don't have symptoms.
On Thursday, the Ministry of Health reported six people with Covid-19 in the Taranaki town of Stratford where wastewater detections of Covid had been reported in the town a few days earlier.
"This is a timely reminder there is an ongoing risk of Covid spreading to Hawke's Bay which means it is critical that people who develop symptoms, no matter how mild, get tested as soon as symptoms develop," Wilson said.
"The earlier we detect any spread of Covid, the more effective our response can be in stamping it out."
Wilson said it was "incredibly important" that people get vaccinated now so they had the time to build immunity before the virus spreads to Hawke's Bay.
Getting vaccinated is the best protection we have against Covid, with vaccinated people less likely get sick with the virus, less likely to pass it on, and much less likely to become seriously ill or require hospitalisation if they do get infected, she said.
For Taradale Intermediate student Harry, getting vaccinated was his 12th birthday wish.
Harry turned 12 on October 21 and his mother arranged for him to get his first dose of the vaccine at Unichem Greenmeadows.
His family have already been vaccinated because they wanted to protect themselves and their family from Covid.
Harry said he felt a bit left out being the only unvaccinated family member.
"All I wanted for my birthday was to get vaccinated so I don't get really sick or anything from the virus because children in Auckland have been in hospital with Covid.
"I wanted to protect myself and others from the virus."
Harry loves kayaking and plays canoe polo and basketball and was keen to have extra protection while travelling to other regions for competitions.
Harry was surprised that getting vaccinated was so easy.
"I was quite nervous but then the pharmacist talked to me and made me feel better. I got it and I was all good. It just felt like a little pinch," he said.
"My arm was a little sore the next day but it was all right."
Harry got his second vaccination on Friday.
For people receiving their first or second dose, there are plenty of opportunities to get vaccinated this Second-Shot Weekend in Napier, Hastings, Wairoa and Central Hawke's Bay.
There will be drive-in or walk-in clinics at Splash Planet, The Church of Latter-Day Saints in Flaxmere, Central Hawke's Bay A&P showgrounds in Waipukurau, Queen Street Practice in Wairoa, Pak'nSave Tamatea, Pak'nSave Napier and at Whitmore Park.
People who get their first or second Covid-19 vaccination at any clinic this weekend go into the draw to win Six60 tickets, iPhones and prezzy cards.
In addition, anyone who gets vaccinated at one of the DHB clinics will receive a $20 voucher. Check hbcovidvaccine.nz for full details.
People can also go to www.bookmyvaccine.nz or call 0800 28 29 26 to book.
People can be tested at the following drive-in testing clinics in Napier :
• The Doctors Napier this Saturday and Sunday (November 13-14), 1pm-5pm
• Whitmore Park, Napier, this Sunday, November 14, 9.30am-3.30pm