Jul 29, 2014

Three Mosquitoes Test Positive For West Nile Virus in Nesconset

Smithtown residents asked to take eliminate sources of stagnant water near homes, take precautions.

Three Mosquitoes Test Positive For West Nile Virus in Nesconset
Suffolk County Department of Health Services has 29 mosquito samples that tested positive for West Nile Virus in Suffolk, including one the Smithtown area. 

Three mosquitoes collected between Aug. 6 and Aug.7  taken from Nesconset tested positive for West Nile Virus. 

As of Thursday, Suffolk County has had 90 mosquito samples and four dead birds test positive for West Nile Virus this year. There have been no confirmed cases in humans or horses this year. 

“The confirmation of West Nile virus in a mosquito pool indicates that the virus is actively circulating within the mosquito population,” said Dr. James Tomarken, commissioner of Suffolk County Department of Health Services. “While there is no cause for alarm, we urge residents to cooperate with us in our efforts to contain the spread of the virus, which can be debilitating to humans.”

In addition, the Suffolk Department of Health said mosquito samples tested positive for West Nile Virus in: Huntington (1), Greenlawn (1), Northport (2), East Northport (2),  Copiague (1), Lindenhurst (1), West Babylon (3), Bay Shore (1), East Islip (1), Port Jefferson Station (1), Selden (2), Farmingville (1), and Yaphank (1).

The county is asking residents action to eliminate areas of stagnant water, where mosquitos breed. 

Residents are asked to: 
  • Dispose of tin cans, plastic containers, ceramic pots or similar water-holding containers.
  • Remove all discarded tires on the property. 
  • Make sure roof gutters drain properly, and clean clogged gutters.
  • Turn over plastic wading pools and wheelbarrows when not in use.
  • Change the water in birdbaths.
  • Clean vegetation and debris from the edges of ponds and keep shrubs and grass trimmed.
  • Clean and chlorinate swimming pools, outdoor saunas and hot tubs.
  • Drain water from pool covers.

To avoid mosquito bites, residents are advised to: 
  •  Minimize outdoor activities between dusk and dawn.
  • Wear shoes and socks, long pants and long-sleeved shirts when outdoors for long periods of time, or when mosquitoes are more active.
  • Use mosquito repellent when outdoors, following label directions carefully.
  • Make sure all windows and doors have screens, and that all screens are in good repair.

According to the SCDHS, most people infected with West Nile virus will experience mild or no symptoms, but some can develop symptoms such as high fever, coma, tremors, convulsions, muscle weakness, vision loss, numbness and paralysis.

The symptoms may last several weeks, and neurological effects may be permanent. Individuals, particularly those 50 years of age or older, or those with compromised immune systems, are urged to take precautions to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes. Those with medical questions about West Nile Virus can call 631-853-3055.

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