By NewsDesk  @infectiousdiseasenews

The New Jersey Department of Health (NJDOH) reported  one confirmed death associated with West Nile virus (WNV) Tuesday.

Map of New Jersey/ National Atlas of the United States

The death is reported in a Camden County man in his 60s who became ill in mid-July has been attributed to WNV neuroinvasive disease.

“It is important to remind residents to continue to take precautions to protect themselves against mosquito bites,” NJDOH Commissioner Judith Persichilli said. “Using an insect repellant and avoiding being outdoors when mosquitos are active are just some of the steps residents can take to stay safe from mosquito-borne illnesses.”

The months of August and September are when most WNV cases are reported in the state.

New Jersey currently has 14 WNV human cases (3 confirmed, 11 probable) reported in the following counties: Bergen (2), Burlington (3), Camden (2), Essex, Gloucester, Middlesex, Passaic, Somerset, Ocean and Monmouth. NJDOH and local health departments are investigating an additional six WNV reports. In a typical year, there are eight WNV infections reported.

West Nile Virus is a disease which people can acquire through the bite of a mosquito that has fed on an infected bird. WNV is not directly transmitted from birds to humans.

For many people, the virus causes asymptomatic infection or a mild to moderate illness typically with a fever. People over age 50 and people with weak immune systems are at greater risk of developing severe illness.  About one in 150 persons will develop a more severe form of the disease, with symptoms such as severe headache, high fever, neck stiffness, stupor, disorientation, coma, tremors, convulsions, muscle weakness and paralysis.