West Nile virus: First locally acquired human case since 2019 confirmed in Ontario

(Photo by Jon Cherry/Getty Images)

The first locally-acquired human case of the West Nile virus since 2019 was reported in Ontario, health officials in San Bernardino County announced Thursday. 

"West Nile Virus can cause a serious illness in humans, therefore I urge residents to take precautions to protect themselves against mosquito bites" said San Bernardino County Health Officer Michael A. Sequeira, M.D.

Health officials say the virus is transmitted to humans through the bite of an infected mosquito.

Some common symptoms of the virus include body aches, fever, rash, nausea, headache, and vomiting. However, immunocompromised individuals and those aged 50 and older are more likely to develop complications.

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Health officials say the risk of infection is highest from summer through early fall.

Residents are encouraged to take the following precautions:

DAWN and DUSK: Avoid spending time outside when mosquitoes are most active.
DRESS: Wear shoes, socks, long pants and long-sleeved shirts that are loose fitting and light colored.
DRAIN: Remove or drain all standing water around your property where mosquitoes lay eggs (birdbaths, ponds, old tires, buckets, clogged gutters or puddles from leaky sprinklers).
DEET: Apply insect repellent containing DEET. When using DEET, be sure to read and follow the label instructions.
DOORS: Make sure doors and windows have tight-fitting screens. Repair or replace screens that have tears or holes to prevent mosquitoes from entering the home.
REPORT: Report green or neglected pools by calling the Department of Public Health’s Division of Environmental Health Services at 1-800-442-2283. Press 3 when prompted.

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