There have been more than 1,400 cases of measles in Auckland, but it seems the epidemic has now peaked and new cases are declining, experts say.
Three people remain at Auckland Hospital and all are children in Manukau County.
There have been fewer and fewer hospitalizations in the past three weeks, Health Officer William Rainger told reporters this afternoon.
"It gives us a lasting optimism that the outbreak of the Auckland epidemic has peaked and may now be declining."
However, with school holidays and a 14-day incubation period, public health officials were still monitoring the situation.
Dr Karen Bartholomew, director of health outcomes for DHBs Waitematā and Auckland, said the new MMR vaccine stock has arrived and will be distributed to DHBs across the country.
Priority vaccination groups continue to be 12-month-olds, 4-year-olds and those under 30 years of age.
But an additional vaccine would allow them to start focusing on some broader groups, such as people in an early childcare facility.
Rainger believed that the large amount of vaccination carried out in recent months would have a very positive impact on fighting the epidemic.
The concern is that Auckland cases could still be extended to other parts of New Zealand, Rainger said.
The Auckland Public Health Unit worked closely with others across the country to find contracts that were traveling and were found to be infected.
Northland and Southland have seen cases, but he declined to say whether they would be considered epidemics, saying it would be a Department of Health issue.
Authorities earlier said they were cautiously optimistic that the epidemic had peaked in August and hoped that strong vaccination efforts would pay off.
The latest data across the country appear to support this, with a tendency for the number of measles to decline across the country.
But there was a danger that more cases of measles could start to emerge outside Auckland as infectious persons traveled during the school holidays.
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From January 1 to October 10, 1742 confirmed cases of measles were reported in New Zealand and 1,416 confirmed cases in the Auckland region, according to the Ministry of Health.