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Tips for preventing West Nile Virus

Posted at 12:57 PM, Aug 21, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-21 12:57:55-04

Just because we are all thinking about COVID doesn’t mean all the other communicable diseases have disappeared. They are still here including West Nile Virus. Dr. Gale Burstein, Erie County Health Commissioner says partnering with local communities and the New York State Health Department they have identified several pool pods of mosquitoes that have tested positive for West Nile Virus so we know it is in the mosquitoes in our community.

This is preventable by preventing mosquito bites. Dr. Burstein says we know that the mosquitoes that carry the West Nile Virus are most active at dawn and dusk so try and stay inside at those times. When you do go outside cover skin as much as possible. If you go out with your skin exposed use a good EPA approved insect repellent with at least 25% deet. Also make sure you don’t make your yard friendly for them. Get rid of standing water where they produce. So, if you have bowls outside for birds or other animals change the water at least every three days. Three days is the lifespan of the mosquito larva. Keep your grass cut and shrubs trimmed and if you have any tires outside make sure there isn’t any standing water in them.

Dr. Burstein says the good news is this is preventable and most people who are infected don’t show any symptoms. She says maybe one in five may develop flu like symptoms and one percent or less develops very serious conditions. You want to protect yourself because for some people this virus can be a very serious infection.
For the Erie County Health Commission website click here.