West Nile virus activity detected in Logan County

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[August 24, 2017]  LINCOLN - The Illinois Department of Public Health collected a mosquito batch in the Lincoln, IL area on August 22, 2017 which tested positive for West Nile Virus (WNV).

This is a reminder that WNV is still a concern throughout Logan County for the remainder of the summer and fall. West Nile encephalitis is an infection of the brain caused by the WNV which is transmitted through the bite of an infected mosquito.

The Logan County Department of Public Health would like to remind everyone the best way to prevent WNV disease is to reduce the number of mosquitoes around your home and to use personal protection. The Logan County Department of Public Health would like to urge you to practice the three Rs reduce, repel and report.

Do reduce your exposure by avoid being outdoors when mosquitoes are most active from dusk to dawn. Repair screens with tears or any other outer openings. Keep windows shut and eliminate areas of standing water around your property where mosquitoes can breed.

Do repel mosquitoes from biting when outdoors by wearing shoes, socks, long pants and a long-sleeved shirt (light-colored clothing is preferred). Wear repellents that contain DEET, picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus or IR 3535 and use according to the label instructions.

Do report dead birds to the Logan County Department of Public Health. If the bird is dead less than 24 hours and has appeared to die of natural causes, it may be eligible for testing. Bird specimens will be accepted for testing until October 15th.

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In addition, contact the health department or your local municipality to report any stagnant water in roadside ditches, abandoned pools, flooded yards or similar locations that may provide breeding sites for mosquitoes.

If you are bitten by a mosquito, there is no reason to be tested for WNV since illnesses related to mosquito bites are rare. However, if you develop symptoms such as high fever, confusion, muscle weakness or severe headache, you should see your doctor.

Remember to play it safe and to continue to take preventative measures until mosquito activity fully ceases. If you have questions regarding WNV, you can contact the Logan County Department of Public Health at 217-735-2317. For additional information regarding West Nile Virus please, visit the health department website at WWW.LCDPH.ORG.

Information Source: IL Dept. of Public Health

[Don Cavi, MS, LEHP
Public Health Administrator
Logan County Department of Public Health.]

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