Eight sore throat drop-in clinics have opened in Auckland this week as part of the Government's $45 million campaign to reduce rates of rheumatic fever.
The clinics are for children who do not attend schools with throat swabbing services or when it is out of school term, said Associate Minister of Health Tariana Turia.
"Rheumatic Fever is a preventable illness that develops from a strep sore throat," she said.
"If we treat this sore throat quickly with antibiotics, we can stop our children and young people from developing rheumatic fever."
In Budget 2013 the Maori Party negotiated as part of the relationship accord with the National-led Government to invest an additional $21.3 million to fight rheumatic fever, including $11.25 million over four years for sore throat drop-in clinics.
The eight drop-in clinics are based in general practices and other community settings in Manurewa, Otara, Mangere, Mt Wellington and Glen Innes.
At least 60 more drop-in clinics will open in greater Auckland and Porirua over the next few months.