Health officials: West Nile virus ‘widespread,’ more mosquito samples test positive in Clark County

CLARK COUNTY — Additional mosquito samples collected in Clark County have tested positive for West Nile virus, according to the Clark County Combined Health District.

>>3rd batch of mosquitoes test positive for West Nile virus in Clark County

The Village of Enon announced that the health department received notice Monday afternoon that mosquitos collected in the area on Tuesday, August 3 tested positive for the virus.

The health district now calls West Nile virus “widespread” in mosquitos across the county, a spokesperson said in a media release last Tuesday.

>>West Nile virus detected in Clark County mosquitoes

“A total of 10 positive samples were collected from areas all over the city of Springfield, and CCCHD advises residents to assume the presence of West Nile virus in their area and to take steps now to eradicate mosquito habitats along their properties,” the spokesperson said in the media release.

“The most recent samples add to a growing list of WNV-positive mosquitos that have been identified in Clark County in the last two weeks.”

The samples collected from across the Enon area is in addition to other samples previously collected in other parts of the county, including Springfield, North Hampton and Catawba areas.

“The best way to avoid the West Nile virus infection is to prevent mosquito bites, and the best way to avoid being bitten by a mosquito is to eliminate habits where mosquitos can survive and reproduce,” the spokesperson said.

In response to the positive samples, CCCHD officials also working on identifying breeding sources, such as areas with stagnant water, misting areas with positive samples with Duet to reduce the adult mosquito population, and distributing informational flyers to people who live in the areas of the positive samples.

About 80 percent of people who get infected with the virus will not show any symptoms, however there is no way to know in advance if you would develop the illness, according to the health department.

“Those who develop symptoms usually do so between three to 14 days after they are bitten by the infected mosquito. There is no specific treatment for WNV infection, and care is based on symptoms,” the health district said.

The health department said about one in 150 people infected with the virus will develop severe illness. Severe symptoms include: high fever, headache, neck stiffness, stupor, disorientation, coma, tremors, convulsions, muscle weakness, vision loss, numbness and paralysis. Symptoms can last several weeks and the neurological effects may be permanent.

The health district recommends applying mosquito repellents on exposed skin and to wear long sleeves and pants when outside or stay inside as much as possible.

People also can get rid of mosquito breeding sites on their properties by emptying or treating any standing water. You also can make sure screens and doors are free of holes or rips.

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