FRESNO, Calif. (KSEE/KGPE) – Two positive human cases of West Nile virus have been confirmed in Fresno County, according to the Fresno County Department of Public Health.
The public health department says these are the first two confirmed cases of 2021 and numbers of the virus are expected to increase due to the Valley’s hot summer temperatures.
Interim Health Officer, Dr. Rais Vohra, says the community should work together to prevent additional spread of the virus to mitigate more positive cases and even deaths caused by mosquito-borne illness this year.
“As West Nile virus activity in the Central Valley continues to increase, I urge Fresno County residents to continue taking every precaution possible to protect themselves against mosquito bites this summer,” says Vohra.
The public health department says residents can protect themselves from mosquito bites and West Nile by practicing the “Three D’s.”
DETER – The FCPHD says people should apply insect repellent that contains DEET, picaridin, IR3535 or oil of lemon eucalyptus according to label instructions. Repellents such as these can keep mosquitos from biting you but are not recommended to be used on children under two months of age, according to health officials.
DAWN AND DUSK – The health department says individuals who go outside during the early morning or evening should wear proper clothing and repellent to prevent mosquito bites. Officials also recommend that all doors and windows have tight-fitting screens to keep these insects out.
DRAIN – According to officials, eliminating all sources of standing water is also key because mosquitoes lay their eggs on standing water. Common items with standing water include flowerpots, old car tires and buckets. Swimming pools that aren’t properly maintained also attract mosquitos. The FCPHD says if you know of a swimming pool that isn’t being properly maintained, contact a local mosquito and vector control agency.
For more information on mosquito control or for information on your local mosquito abatement district, visit the Fresno County Mosquito Control website.