Half of Kansas identified as at ‘high-risk’ for West Nile virus

(Via the KDHE)

The Kansas Department of Health and Environment has confirmed two positive tests for the West Nile Virus.

Both of the residents live in Johnson County, KS., according to the state.

“Although for most people West Nile virus may not cause a great deal of concern, we encourage residents, especially our vulnerable populations, to take steps to prevent infection because of the potential for complications,” said Dr. Greg Lakin, Chief Medical Officer, in a statement.

The virus can be spread to people through mosquito bites, but cannot be spread from person to person.

Here are recommendations from the state on what to do to prevent an infection: • Visit the KDHE WNV website weekly to learn about the current WNV risk level; http://www.kdheks.gov/epi/arboviral_disease.htm

• When you are outdoors, use insect repellent containing an EPA-registered active ingredient on skin and clothing, including DEET, picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus, or IR3535. Follow the directions on the package.

• Many mosquitoes are most active at dusk and dawn. Be sure to use insect repellent and wear long sleeves and pants at these times or consider staying indoors during these hours.

• The elderly or those with a weakened immune system should consider limiting their exposure outside during dusk and dawn when the Culex species mosquitos are most active.

• Make sure you have good screens on your windows and doors to keep mosquitoes out.

• Get rid of mosquito breeding sites by emptying standing water from flower pots, buckets and barrels. Change the water in pet dishes and replace the water in bird baths weekly. Drill holes in tire swings so water drains out. Keep children's wading pools empty and on their sides when they aren't being used.

• Horses can also be infected with WNV. Talk with your veterinarian about vaccinating your horse to protect them against WNV.Copyright 2018 KCTV (Meredith Corp.) All rights reserved.

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