Stanislaus County officials are reporting that two 65-year-old males have died from West Nile Virus (WNV) in the county.
These two deaths are the first two reported in Stanislaus County; the first victim died on July 27 and the second on Aug. 4.
In total, the county has had seven cases of neuroinvasive WNV, three cases of West Nile Virus, and four cases of asymptomatic blood donors for a total of 14 human cases. The age range for symptomatic cases in Stanislaus County is 33 to 72 years old. The first two human cases in the county were reported in June.
“We grieve the deaths of these two men,” said Dr. John Walker, Public Health Officer. “The WNV season extends into October in Stanislaus County so it is important for residents to continue to take precautions to prevent mosquito bites.”
Stanislaus County residents can protect themselves and their families by following these simple steps:
Eliminate sources of standing water where mosquitoes lay their eggs.
Avoid spending time outside when mosquitoes are most active, at dawn and dusk, and especially for the first two hours after sunset.
When outdoors, wear long pants, long-sleeved shirts, and other protective clothing.
Exclude mosquitoes from your home with tight fitting screens on doors and windows.
Apply insect repellent containing the active ingredient DEET when outdoors, according to label instructions.
In addition to DEET-based products, the Centers for Disease Control also recommend insect repellants containing oil of lemon eucalyptus and Picaridin.
The Turlock and East Side Mosquito Abatement Districts are treating mosquito habitats using ground and aerial spray equipment. The districts continue to be concerned with neglected swimming pools, which become breeding grounds for mosquitoes. They are conducting aerial surveillance photography for neglected swimming pools and also provide free mosquito fish to put in ornamental ponds and other backyard locations.
Public health officials say the reporting and testing of dead birds is an important step in preventing WNV. To report a dead bird, call the California State hotline at 1-877-WNV-BIRD or report it online at WestNile.ca.gov.
To report mosquito-breeding problem areas, Stanislaus County residents north of the Tuolumne River should call the East Side Mosquito Abatement District at 209-522-4098; all other Stanislaus County residents should call the Turlock Mosquito Abatement District at 209-634-1234.