Health officials confirm first human West Nile Virus illnesses of 2018

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West Nile virus transmitted through the bite of a mosquito that has picked up the virus by feeding on an infected bird, the release stated.

There are no vaccines or drugs to treat West Nile virus. Zika is less prevalent with 55 reported cases in Texas for 2017. In communities where there are organized mosquito control programs, contact your municipal government to report areas of stagnant water in roadside ditches, flooded yards and similar locations that may produce mosquitoes. No human cases of West Nile virus have been reported this year, so far.

People who work in outdoor occupations or like to spend time outdoors are at increased risk for West Nile virus infection from mosquito bites.

"While all county residents are at risk for West Nile virus, people over 50 years of age and those with chronic medical problems are at higher risk of severe disease", said Jeffrey Gunzenhauser, MD, MPH, Interim Health Officer for Los Angeles County.

Nesemeier says fever body aches, a stiff neck, or a rash can be general symptoms that someone wouldn't typically associate with West Nile. Reported cases from mosquito and tick bites in IL have increased by more than half (58 percent) from 2005 to 2016. "Taking just a few minutes to remove any standing water from your yard, apply recommended mosquito repellents, and ensure your window and door screens are free of holes can help protect you and your community from this unsafe disease", said Jared Dever, District Manager of the San Gabriel Valley Mosquito and Vector Control District.

Avoid mosquito-infested areas at dawn and dusk.

Avoid spending time outside when mosquitoes are most active, especially at dawn and dusk, and wear long trousers, long-sleeved shirts and other protective clothing outside.

When outdoors, wear protective clothing and apply an EPA-approved insect repellent containing DEET, picaridin or oil of lemon eucalyptus. Fix or replace screens that have tears or other openings.

Halton residents can help reduce breeding grounds for mosquitoes by regularly emptying water from bird baths, plant pots, toys and tires.

To minimize exposure to mosquitoes, eliminate standing water from property and make sure doors and windows have tightfitting screens without holes.

 Empty and scrub the walls of birdbaths and wading pools weekly to remove any attached eggs.

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