West Nile Virus

BCHD iS NO LONGER ACCEPTING BIRDS TO BE TESTED FOR wnv

West Nile virus (WNV) is most commonly transmitted to humans by mosquitoes. You can reduce your risk of being infected with WNV by using insect repellent and wearing protective clothing to prevent mosquito bites. There are no medications to treat or vaccines to prevent WNV infection. Fortunately, most people infected with WNV will have no symptoms. West Nile virus infection can cause serious disease. About 1 in 5 people who are infected will develop a fever with other symptoms. Less than 1% of infected people develop a serious, sometimes fatal, neurologic illness.

WNV is established as a seasonal epidemic in North America that flares up in the summer and continues into the fall.

West Nile Virus is not spread by person-to-person contact and being bitten by a mosquito does not mean you will get the virus. Even in areas where mosquitoes have been found to carry the virus, less than 1% of them are infected. If a mosquito is infected, less than 1% of people who are bitten by that mosquito will become severely ill.

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Reduce your risk of contracting West Nile Virus 

  • The most effective way to control mosquitoes around the home is to remove any standing water.
  • Mosquitoes need still water to breed and grow and it doesn't take much water or time.
  • Make sure screens on doors and windows are in good condition.
  • When possible, limit outdoor activities at dusk, dawn, and during the evening. Wear long pants and long sleeved shirts when outdoors, especially during these times.

  • Use mosquito repellent. CDC recommends the use of products containing active ingredients which have been registered with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for use as repellents applied to skin and clothing.

    Of the products registered with the EPA, those containing DEET, picaridin, IR3535, and some oil of lemon eucalyptus and para-menthane-diol products provide longer-lasting protection.