West Nile Virus found in Harrisburg

Harrisburg

HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) – The Dauphin County Conservation District has collected its second West Nile Virus-infected mosquito sample of the year.

The infected sample was collected on Aug. 14 in Harrisburg and to date, no human cases of West Nile Virus have been reported in Dauphin County.

Certain species of mosquitoes carry West Nile, which when transmitted to people, can cause West Nile encephalitis, an infection that can result in an inflammation of the brain.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, all residents of areas where virus activity has been identified are at risk of getting West Nile.

County Commissioners Jeff Haste, Mike Pries, and George Hartwick recommend taking the following precautions:

  • Buying products with Bacillus thuringiensis israelensis, a naturally occurring bacteria that kills mosquito larvae but is safe for people, pets, and plant for stagnant pools of water in the lawn and garden.
  • Remove any standing water in pots, containers, pool covers, tires, wheelbarrows, wading pools, roof gutters and other containers that hold water.
  • Make sure screens fit tightly over doors and windows to keep mosquitoes out of homes.
  • Consider wearing long-sleeved shirts, long pants and socks when outdoors, particularly when mosquitoes are most active at dawn and dusk, or in areas known for having large numbers of mosquitoes.
  • Reduce outdoor exposure at dawn and dusk during peak mosquito periods, usually April through October.
  • Use insect repellents according to the manufacturer’s instructions. An effective repellent will contain DEET, picaridin or oil of lemon eucalyptus. Consult with a pediatrician or family physician if you have questions about the use of repellent on children, as repellent is not recommended for children under the age of two months.

To learn more about West Nile and prevention, visit the CDC’s website at www.cdc.gov/westnile

For more information about Dauphin County’s WNV Control Program, contact Christopher Hooper, program coordinator, at 717-921-8100.

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