KDHE warning about West Nile Virus

June 14, 2017 - 4:34 am

TOPEKA, Kan. (KNSS) - Summertime is prime time for mosquito borne illnesses like West Nile Virus. Last week a Barton County man tested positive for West Nile. Amie Worthington with the Kansas Department of Health and Environment says mosquito season is just starting. Historically, the largest numbers of West Nile cases have been reported in August and September. 

Worthington says It's important to note that many people get West Nile every year and never know they have it. 

"The majority of people infected with West Nile are asymptomatic," says Worthington. "About 20 percent of individuals will show symptoms including fever, rash, joint pains... and then a subset of those will go on to develop severe illness like meningitis and could require hospitalization."

Worthington notes that it's important to wear an EPA-approved mosquito repellent. Also, it's best to drain any standing  water on your property. Standing water is where mosquitoes lay their eggs, so that will help reduce the population of  the insects. In addition, it is best to wear long sleeves and long pants as long as weather permits, to prevent mosquito bites.

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