First case of West Nile virus found in Ada County

Faith Castro
August 9, 2018

The department stressed that West Nile is a preventable disease and that wearing insect repellant outdoors is a must.

The county's Health Unit reports that mosquitoes taken from a trap in the southeastern part of Mitchell have tested positive for West Nile virus.

Mosquitos are collected from over 90 test sites across CT to test for viruses including West Nile, Zika and Eastern Equine Encephalitis. In North America, that means that mosquito season - extending from the late spring through the fall - is West Nile season.

According to an announcement from Gov. Dannel P. Malloy's office, the rates of mosquitoes carrying West Nile have been much higher this year.

Only one in 150 people infected by the virus will experience symptoms, and only 20% will become seriously ill. In a small number of cases, especially among those with pre-existing medical risk factors, West Nile can be life threatening.

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The Health Department wants to remind the public that the virus is present and has been around for many years.

Scott Sawlis of Dallas County Health and Human Services demonstrates a mosquito trap. It's now been detected in Ada County. The Health Unit has been trapping and testing mosquitoes since June. By the end of mosquito season in October, 26 Dallas County residents had reported infections, leading to two deaths.

Limit outdoor activities during dawn and dusk, when mosquitoes are most active.

Stephen Young has written about Dallas news for the Observer since 2014.

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