The Florida Department of Health in Volusia County is advising residents to take precautions due to increased mosquito-borne disease activity in areas of Volusia County.
A suspect human case of West Nile illness has been confirmed by the state laboratory and there is a heightened concern that additional residents may become ill. The case involves a 34-year-old female.
West Nile virus (WNV) is most commonly transmitted to humans by mosquitoes. There are no medications to treat or vaccines to prevent WNV infection.
Fortunately, most people infected with WNV will have no symptoms. About one in five people who are infected will develop a fever with other symptoms. Less than one percent of infected people develop a serious, sometimes fatal, neurologic illness.
The county is already under a mosquito-borne illness advisory since June of this year after Eastern equine encephalitis was confirmed in three horses and several sentinel chickens. The advisory has been extended.
Residents and visitors are reminded to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes and to take basic precautions to help limit exposure. Volusia County Mosquito Control and the health department continue surveillance and prevention efforts and encourage everyone to take basic precautions to help limit exposure by following the Department of Health recommendations.
Tips for keeping mosquitos at bay include draining water from any container that collects rain water such as garbage cans, house gutters an buckets, birdbaths and emptying plastic swimming pools when not in use. Also cover skin with clothing or repellent.
For more information, visit DOH’s web site at www.doh.state.fl.us/Environment/medicine/arboviral/index.html.