The New York State Department of Health announced yesterday that they have confirmed the first three human cases of West Nile Virus outside of New York City in Nassau, Westchester and Monroe Counties for a combined total of seven human cases to date in 2018.
“At the Governor Cuomo’s direction, the Department of Health launched an aggressive mosquito-borne disease plan earlier this summer, and we continue to work with our local partners to reduce public health risks,” said State Health Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker.”The most important thing New Yorkers can do is take the appropriate precautions to protect themselves and their loved ones from mosquito bites.”
West Nile virus (WNV) is transmitted to humans and some animals through the bite of an infected mosquito. WNV was first identified in New York State in 1999. Since 2000, 497 human cases and 37 deaths of WNV have been reported statewide.
The Department recommends the following precautions to reduce risk of infection from mosquito-borne diseases:
- Cover your skin as completely as possible while outside when mosquitoes are present and active. Wear long sleeves, pants and socks.
- Use insect repellent recommended for use on exposed skin.
- Always follow label directions before using any kind of repellent.
- Reduce or eliminate all standing water in yards.
- Remove discarded tires and turn over containers in which water can collect.
- Make sure all windows and doors have screens and are free of rips, tears or holes.
- Clean and chlorinate swimming pools, outdoor saunas and hot tubs.
- Drain water from pool covers.
- Clean vegetation and debris from the edges of ponds.
- Larvicide can be used according to label directions on areas where water collects and cannot be removed or drained
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