Health officials anxious about West Nile virus in Grand Rapids area

Health officials anxious about West Nile virus in Grand Rapids area

Aurora officials said the city dispatched a team to immediately spray the designated area in the DuPage County portion of the city in an attempt to control the mosquito population. "For West Nile, the mosquitoes pick it up from the birds".

West Nile virus is transmitted from birds through bites by the Culex pipiens mosquito.

"But this is a red flag telling us we need to really communicate the message to protect yourself against mosquitos because it's going to be a more risky year", Hall said.

Eliminate standing water sources.

The Kent County Health Department is warning of a potentially serious outbreak of the West Nile virus this season.

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It's the first lab-confirmed case of West Nile virus for 2018 for the health unit's region which includes the City of Kawartha Lakes, Northumberland County and Haliburton County.

While pool samples of mosquitoes are taken by the Warren County Commission two times a week about every other week, Gruener said routine traps are often put in place or placed where residents may complain of heightened activity.

But this year, the highest percentage of the insects in history are carrying West Nile Virus. West Nile is especially unsafe to people over 60 years old, as serious complications can develop. PHO adds five reported human cases of West Nile virus have also been found in Ontario.

Among the tips Gruener shared to reduce the risk of being bitten by a mosquito, she said the most important was to choose a repellent with picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus or Deet, although Gruener said she has heard some people say Deet eventually stops working for them.

"Most people infected with the virus have no symptoms at all, or they have flu-like symptoms such as fever, headache, body aches and fatigue", Public Health officials stated.

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