West Nile virus claims first NC victim this season

The first human case of West Nile Virus is here and it's a reminder that each year all Mississippians need to act fast to protect themselves from the disease

This is the first bird that tested positive for West Nile virus in Dane County this year since monitoring for the mosquito-transmitted virus began May 1.

In 2017, Dane County had its highest number of people diagnosed with West Nile virus, eight cases, all of which resulted in neurological involvement such as encephalitis or meningitis.

"Our goal is to make sure individuals know we've received a positive test for West Nile Virus this season", he tells KMOX.

"It's early enough in the year that when this virus does start moving around, there's plenty of time for amplification, meaning that it's very possible for a lot of people to become infected in the time remaining in this summer".

There are no vaccines or medications to treat West Nile, the KDHE said. "We all need to take personal precautions to protect ourselves and loved ones from mosquito bites and thus reduce our risk of infection".

They also say the hot, dry weather is a good environment for mosquitoes that spread the virus.

Wear shoes, socks, long trousers, and a long-sleeved shirt when outdoors for long periods, or when mosquitoes are most active.

Many mosquitoes are most active at dusk and dawn.

West Nile can cause severe neurological problems, but most people don't show any symptoms.

Otaigbe said the most important thing is to use repellent containing DEET on your skin, and there is another ingredient you should use to protect your clothes.

Get rid of mosquito breeding sites by emptying standing water from flower pots, buckets and barrels.

They're most active in the two-hour span before sunset and generally dusk and dawn.

Ouachita and East Baton Rouge parishes each reported a case of the less serious, flu-like West Nile fever.

Be sure door and window screens are tight fitting and in good fix.

Use an approved repellent according to its label.

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