West Nile virus confirmed in Pueblo — HEALTH ALERT

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West Nile virus confirmed in Pueblo — HEALTH ALERT

North central, northeast, and southwest Kansas are at moderate risk for WNV infections. Of those samples, 4,987 pooled samples have tested positive for West Nile virus, and 433 have tested positive for St. Louis encephalitis.

"Horse owners need to be vigilant in vaccinating their animals against diseases spread by mosquitoes", New Jersey Secretary of Agriculture Douglas H. Fisher said in a statement. Most people and animals successfully fight off the virus and develop antibodies against future infection.

The Health Services Agency urged the public to avoid exposure to mosquito bites.

One individual is a male over the age of 50 who had the non-neuroinvasive form of the illness, and another is a female under the age of 50 who had the neuroinvasive form of the illness. SLEV has a similar incubation period as WNV, 5-15 days.

Prevent mosquito bites by wearing clothes that cover your arms and legs, and using an insect repellent with 20%-30% DEET. Follow the directions on the package.

-DUSK AND DAWN: Avoid outdoor activities, such as gardening, at dusk and dawn when mosquitoes are most active.

DRESS - When weather permits, wear long sleeves, long trousers, and socks when outdoors.

The local district has sent over 1,000 samples of mosquitoes for testing so far, he said, and more than 70 samples have been tested in house.

Make sure you have good screens on your windows and doors to keep mosquitoes out.

- Tightly cover water storage containers (buckets, cisterns, rain barrels) so that mosquitoes can not get inside to lay eggs. Change the water in pet dishes and replace the water in bird baths weekly.

- Drill drain holes in the bottoms of recycling containers, turn over wading pools and wheelbarrows when not in use, and remove all discarded tires. Cases of WNV occur during mosquito season, which starts in the summer and continues through fall. The last known case of SLEV in Kansas occurred in 2004.

The Culex mosquito is one variety found in Utah that can carry the West Nile virus.

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