WELLINGTON, April 6 (Xinhua) -- The number of confirmed cases in New Zealand's typhoid outbreak hit 18 on Thursday, but health officials identified one other "probable case" and are investigated two other cases.
Six people were currently in hospital with the potentially deadly disease, said a statement from the Auckland Regional Public Health Service (ARPHS).
"The small number of new cases coming forward indicates the outbreak may have plateaued," said the statement.
All cases were connected to the same Samoan Assembly of God Church group in Auckland and those considered to be at highest risk of contracting typhoid were being closely monitored by ARPHS.
Typhoid had a typical incubation period of eight to 14 days, but incubation could be up to 80 days, so cases could emerge over several weeks.
On Tuesday, the ARPHS revealed that a woman who had been hospitalized with some serious health issues had died after the typhoid infection became a "complicating factor."
The woman, who was a member of the Samoan Assembly of God Church, had died in hospital on March 28.
Officials said they had delayed announcing the woman's death until after her funeral on Monday.
On Wednesday, Health Minister Jonathan Coleman voiced his anger after he learned about the outbreak from the television news on Friday, three days after the woman died.
Typhoid is spread primarily through food and water, but can be spread from person to person.
Symptoms include a high fever developing over several days, headaches, general weakness and muscle aches.
Stomach pain and constipation are also common, but some people get diarrhea.
Typhoid is potentially fatal, but can be treated with antibiotics.