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FIRST HUMAN CASE OF WEST NILE VIRUS IN KINGS COUNTY

Post Date:04/28/2017 2:27 PM

N E W S  R E L E A S E

Contacts:

Roger A. Talob, Jr, PA-C, MPAS
Physician Assistant
Phone (559) 584-1401

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE April 28, 2017

 FIRST HUMAN CASE OF WEST NILE VIRUS IN KINGS COUNTY

HANFORD – The Kings County Health Department (KCHD) announced today that the first human case of West Nile Virus (WNV) in 2017 has been confirmed.  The last human case in Kings County was in 2016.  This is the first human case of WNV reported in the state of California in 2017.  According to Dr. Teske, Health Officer for Kings County, “We are anticipating a significant increase in the number of WNV cases because of all the rain this year.  It’s a perfect combination of a lot of water and warm weather.”  It is especially important to eliminate any standing water – no matter how small an amount – where mosquitoes can breed. 

Since the county’s first human case in 2005, there have been a total of 66 WNV cases, including four deaths.  The last case of WNV reported in Kings County was in 2016, with a total of eight cases reported in that year. 

The Kings Mosquito Abatement District continues to monitor for WNV in Kings County.  So far in 2017, WNV has not been detected in the bird or mosquito population.

West Nile virus is one of a group of disease-causing viruses spread by mosquitoes, and first appeared on the East Coast in 1999 and steadily moved west.  West Nile virus is transmitted to humans and animals through the bite of an infected mosquito and cannot be spread person to person.

People 50 years of age and older and individuals with diabetes or hypertension have a higher chance of getting sick and are more likely to develop complications. 

The KCHD recommends that individuals protect against mosquito bites and WNV by practicing the “Three Ds”:

  1. DEET – Apply insect repellent containing DEET, picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus or IR3535 according to label instructions.  Repellents keep the mosquitoes from biting you. Insect repellents should not be used on children under two months of age.
  2. DAWN AND DUSK – Mosquitoes usually bite in the early morning and evening so it is important to wear proper clothing and repellent if outside during these times.  Make sure that your doors and windows have tight-fitting screens to keep out mosquitoes.  Repair or replace screens that have tears or holes.
  3. DRAIN – Mosquitoes lay their eggs on standing water.  Eliminate all sources of standing water on your property, by emptying flower pots, old car tires, buckets, and other containers.  If you know of a swimming pool that is not being properly maintained, please contact your local mosquito and vector control agency.

 

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