Southwest District Health News Release
July 10, 2014 MEDIA CONTACT: Laurie Boston
(208) 899-1268 cell firstname.lastname@example.org
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
RESIDENTS ENCOURAGED TO REDUCE THEIR RISK FOR WEST NILE
Southwest District Health (SWDH) officials have confirmed mosquitoes collected in a trap in the Sweet area of Gem County, outside the Gem County Mosquito Abatement District boundary, have tested positive for West Nile virus. No human cases have been reported in Idaho this season.
The health district placed traps in six locations within the Sweet, Ola, and Montour area and will continue monitoring weekly. The Sweet pool is the first to test positive in this area for 2014. Three Culex tarsalis, the species that carry the West Nile virus, were contained in the pool.
“While this positive pool is very low in numbers, it is important that we all take steps to minimize our risk to the West Nile virus,” said David Loper, Division Director of Environmental Health Services for Southwest District Health. “Most mosquitoes out during the day are nuisance mosquitoes, but if possible, we should avoid activities between dawn and dusk when the mosquitoes that potentially carry West Nile are most active,” he said.
West Nile is a potentially serious illness that is usually spread to animals and humans through the bite of an infected mosquito. People with symptoms may experience fever, headaches, body aches, fatigue, nausea, vomiting, eye pain, and sometimes swollen lymph glands or a skin rash typically occurring two to fourteen days after the bite of an infected mosquito. In some cases the virus can cause severe illness, especially in people over the age of 50.
“We are all outdoors more during the summer, especially farmers who are spending long hours in the fields. We can continue to participate in outdoor activities by taking some simple steps to minimize the risk of mosquito bites and also reduce mosquito habitat around our home or work,” Loper said.
For more information, call Southwest District Health at (208) 455-5400.
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