Half of Kansas at high risk for West Nile virus

Mosquitoes with the West Nile virus have been found in St. Louis County for the first time this sumemer

The Jefferson County Health Department is dealing with what they've called a health emergency after two collections of adult mosquitos tested positive for the West Nile Virus.

Mosquitoes collected in north suburban Wilmette this week have tested positive for West Nile virus. And one person in East Baton Rouge was infected with the virus but showed no symptoms.

West Nile virus can be deadly for people with weak immune systems.

There are no West Nile vaccines licensed for use in humans and no medications to cure West Nile disease once a person is infected. For about 20 percent of those infected, though, symptoms can include fever, aches, vomiting, diarrhea or rash.

The first finding of mosquito-transmitted virus in DE also serves, he said, as a good reminder for people to continue taking common-sense precautions against mosquito bites.

West Nile virus is one of several mosquito-borne viruses that can be acquired in North Carolina, DHHS says.

"The positive bird means that residents of Chippewa County need to be more vigilant in their personal protective measures to prevent mosquito bites", said county public health director Angela Weideman.

Dress - Wear loose-fitting, long-sleeved shirts and trousers to reduce the amount of exposed skin. In 2002, the state documented its first human infections, with 52 cases reported that year. Most WNV infections occur in the late summer and early fall.

"I think that should not necessarily alarm people but certainly should alert them to take maybe additional precautions, protect their families, apply DEET containing bug spray and empty any standing water on their property", Prather says. Limit the number of places around your home for mosquitoes to breed by either draining or getting rid of items that hold water.

Make sure your window and door screens are tight and without holes or other openings.

Consider the use of mosquito repellent, according to directions, when it is necessary to be outdoors.

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