Vincent Taurima's tangi linked to outbreak of paratyphoid in Hawke's Bay

Mussels gathered from Napier Marina are to blame for three people falling ill to a serious disease.

Mussels gathered from Napier Marina are to blame for three people falling ill to a serious disease.

A tangi for a Hawke's Bay man who died after getting lost in the Tongariro National Park has been linked to an outbreak of paratyphoid.

Six people have been hospitalised with the illness, and at least three of them had eaten mussels taken from Napier Marina. 

Mussels believed to have been from the marina were served at the tangi of Vincent Taurima, held 11 days ago at Tangoio Marae.

George Reti, Ngāti Kahungunu's Napier Marae representative, said on Tuesday he would talk to elders about the potential of a rāhui being placed on gathering seafood from the marina area.

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Typically rāhui, or harvesting restrictions, are placed over areas where a death had been caused, he said. No-one has died as a result of the paratyphoid outbreak. 

There were signs on the water's edge around the marina saying seafood gathered there should not be eaten, but people continued to do so, he said.

It was possible they had not seen the signs, or that they ignored them. 

The Hawke's Bay District Health Board is investigating to find out whether all the paratyphoid cases were caused by eating mussels taken from the same spot. 

Medical officer of health Nick Jones said paratyphoid fever was a serious illness.

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"It's very important people heed the warnings and don't eat shellfish gathered from the Napier Marina area."

People with the disease will have a fever, chills, headache, possibly a rash, and may also get severe vomiting and diarrhoea.

Paratyphoid generally occurs within 10 days of consuming contaminated food or water, but symptoms may take as long as four weeks to develop. 

Anyone feeling sick and who has eaten shellfish from the Napier Marina area should contact their family doctor or they could call HealthLine 24/7 0800 611 116.

 - Stuff


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