West Nile Virus Arrives for 2020 in Amador County

Amador County, CA – Amador County Public Health confirms the first 2020 case of West Nile virus (WNV) in an Amador County horse. Outbreaks of WNV occur each summer in the United States and are most commonly transmitted to humans and animals through a mosquito bite from a mosquito harboring the virus. Public Health officials remind the community to take preventative measures to avoid mosquitoborne disease.

“The appearance of West Nile Virus in Amador County is not a surprise,” said Dr. Rita Kerr, Amador County Health Officer. “WNV has been detected in California and neighboring counties for the past few months. It is important that people be aware there are measures they can take to minimize exposure to
mosquitos and reduce the chance of becoming infected.”

Prevent mosquito bites by practicing the “Three D’s”:
1. DEET – Apply insect repellent containing DEET, picaradin, oil of lemon eucalyptus or IR3535
according to label instructions. Repellents keep the mosquitoes from biting you.
2. DAWN AND DUSK – Mosquitoes that carry WNV bite in the early morning and evening so it is
important to wear repellent at this time. Make sure that your doors and windows have tight-fitting
screens to keep out mosquitoes. Repair or replace screens with tears or holes.
3. DRAIN – Mosquitoes lay their eggs on standing water. Eliminate all sources of standing water on
your property, including flower pots, old car tires, and rain gutters. Mosquito Dunks are another
prevention measure that are dropped in stagnant water, bird baths or ponds to form a barrier
which prevent mosquitos from breeding.

The risk of serious illness to most people is low. However, some individuals — less than 1 percent — will develop serious neurologic illness such as encephalitis or meningitis. People 50 years and older have a higher chance of getting sick and are more likely to develop serious symptoms. Those with diabetes and/or hypertension are at greatest risk for serious illness.

For more information on WNV, visit California’s West Nile virus website: http://www.westnile.ca.gov/ For WNV virus equine vaccination information, please contact your veterinarian.
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