Two confirmed cases of West Nile Virus in Meck Co., officials say to take caution
The county says there are four total confirmed human cases in the state of North Carolina
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - Mecklenburg County health officials are alerting residents to be cautious as there are now two confirmed human cases of West Nile Virus in the county.
The county says there are four total confirmed human cases in the state of North Carolina and the increase is concerning due to the state averaging two cases of WNV by the end of August.
“I know this is a great time of year to be outdoors, but we want to make sure the public is taking caution and protecting themselves. When you’re outdoors, use mosquito repellent. Take note of any standing water around your home and empty those containers as they can be a breeding ground for mosquitos. Enjoy the weather, but be cautious,” said Dr. Raynard Washington, Public Health director.
The majority of people who are infected by WNV usually experience either no symptoms or a mild, flu-like illness, but 20 percent of infected people will develop a fever with other symptoms such as headache, body aches, joint pains, vomiting, diarrhea or a rash. In about 1% of infections, it can cause serious illness and death in some cases.
According to the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services, fall is the time of year when most cases of mosquito borne illnesses are reported, and with already higher-than-average cases, NCDHHS recommends the following precautions:
- Use mosquito repellent that contains DEET (or equivalent) when outside in areas where mosquitoes might be present.
Use caution when applying to children. See www.epa.gov/insect-repellents/find-repellent-right-you for repellants that will work for you and your family.
- Install or repair screens on windows and doors to keep mosquitoes outside. Or keep windows and doors closed and use air conditioning if possible.
- Reduce mosquito breeding by emptying standing water from flowerpots, gutters, buckets, pool covers, pet water dishes, discarded tires and birdbaths at least once a week.
- If you think you or a family member might have WNV disease, talk with your health care provider.
Related: Increased risk for West Nile Virus
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