Cases of West Nile virus continue to rise in Saginaw County

Faith Castro
August 23, 2018

In a two-page press release, Interior Health said two dead ravens from the Kimberley area tested positive for West Nile.

The Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC) Mosquito Control Section has seen an increase of WNV found in wild birds and sentinel chickens.

The person passed away last week and was diagnosed with a "more severe" form of West Nile virus. The majority of people bitten by an infected mosquito will have no symptoms, about 20 percent will have mild flu-like symptoms, and less than 1 percent will become seriously ill. This is more likely to occur in those over 50 years of age and those with medical conditions or weakened immune systems, according to public health officials.

There have also been cases of mosquitos spreading the virus to horses and other animals, so horse owners are encouraged to contact their veterinarians for informations about equine vaccines.

West Nile is a mosquito-borne virus.

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Prevent mosquitos breeding near your home. Mosquitoes lay their larvae in standing water. Stagnant backyard pools can be a big source of mosquitoes and should be maintained regularly. This is the time of day mosquitoes that can carry the virus are most active.

Install screens on all windows.

Wear protective clothing. If you are in an area with many mosquitoes, wear loose fitting, light-coloured clothing, full-length trousers, and a long-sleeved shirt. Check the product label for instructions on proper use.

"People can avoid insect bites by using insect repellent and wearing tops with long sleeves".

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