State health officials raised the risk level for West Nile virus from low to moderate statewide Tuesday and urged residents to take precautions. Older adults and people with weakened immune systems are at an increased risk of severe disease from the virus. The virus is not contagious between people. When present, WNV symptoms tend to include fever and flu-like illness.
Repel mosquitoes by wearing long trousers, long-sleeved shirts, shoes and socks and by applying insect repellent containing DEET, picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus or IR 3535 according to product instructions.
Multiple mosquito pools have tested positive for West Nile Virus in Windsor Essex-County this past week.
"You're still going to get bit, but you just hope for the best, you know I spray mosquito spray, but I still get bit", said Galloway.
Dr Jolyon Medlock, PHE's head of medical entomology said: 'While we have detected this mosquito species in areas around the Thames Estuary, we have not detected the virus itself.
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"August and September are the months when most human cases occur, " said DPH State Epidemiologist Dr. Catherine Brown. In rare cases, WNV can cause severe disease with symptoms such as disorientation, tremors, convulsions, paralysis, inflammation of the brain, and coma.
Of the 351 cities and towns in MA, 162 communities are already considered to be at moderate risk for West Nile virus, officials said. Any activity that prevents mosquitoes from biting or breeding can help to reduce the risk.
Apply Insect Repellent when Outdoors.
Mosquitoes which can carry the deadly West Nile Virus have been found in Essex - sparking fears that the disease could gain a toehold in Britain. DEET-free products (such as those containing icardin, p-menthane-3, 8-diol /lemon-eucalyptus oil, or soybean oil) are also available, but may not provide as long-lasting protection. In communities where there are organized mosquito control programs, contact your municipal government to report areas of stagnant water in roadside ditches, flooded yards and similar locations that may produce mosquitoes.