West Nile cases second-highest this year since virus found in Iowa

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Suffolk County reported seven human cases in 2017, five human cases in both 2015 and 2016, one in 2014, and four in both 2011 and 2013. "We know only about the cases in which the patient sought treatment and we received laboratory confirmation of West Nile virus". It is the first human case this year in Washoe County that is suspected to have been acquired locally.

The number of human cases of West Nile virus varies each year.

"Although we've had a rather dramatic shift into east-central Nebraska, it's important to remember that it's statewide", said Dr. Tom Safranek, State Epidemiologist for DHHS.

WNV is spread to people through the bite of an infected mosquito and is not transmitted person to person.

DHHS urges anyone experiencing flu-like symptoms, including fever and headache, to contact their local medical provider.

In rare cases, WNV can cause severe disease with symptoms such as muscle weakness, stiff neck, disorientation, tremors, convulsions, paralysis and coma.

Individuals who have medical questions related to West Nile virus may call the Department of Health Services: 631-854-0333. "The risk of getting WNV is present anytime that mosquitos are active".

Wear proper clothing and repellent if going outdoors in mosquito-prone areas, especially in the early morning and evening in the Washoe County area. That includes using insect repellent and wearing long-sleeved shirts and long trousers. Limit outdoor activities during these times. Standing water and warm weather breed mosquitoes.

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