Environmental Health Services has received results for the first positive mosquito pool for West Nile Virus (WNV) in Jefferson County. With all of the rain that has occurred this summer, stagnant pools of water are bound exist. These pools serve as ideal breeding sites for mosquitoes, some of which carry WNV. West Nile virus infection is spread by the bite of infected mosquitoes. Most people infected with WNV will have no symptoms. About 1 in 5 people who are infected will develop a fever with other symptoms.
It is important to realize that West Nile virus can be debilitating and life threatening. Your backyard or patio is not a "safe zone." Even a quick trip to the trash, barbecue or garden allows time for an infected mosquito to bite. Everyone should take precautions to avoid mosquito bites.
The best way to prevent West Nile virus is to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes this summer and fall. Residents should also eliminate standing, stagnant water where mosquitoes breed. Remember the 4 Ds:
- Use DEET or alternative;
- DRESS in long sleeves and pants;
- Avoid DUSK until DAWN; and,
- DRAIN standing water.
Visit the JCPH West Nile Virus webpage for more information and helpful tips, or contact the JCPH Zoonosis Program at 303-271-5730 or the Jefferson County Environmental Health Services office at 303-232-6301.