Monday October 14, 2019
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West Nile Death Confirmed in a Louisville Resident

State Confirms One Other Non-Fatal Louisville Case

WestNileThe Kentucky Department for Public Health has confirmed a death from the West Nile virus in a Louisville resident and has confirmed one other non-fatal Louisville case.

In 2015, there were three human cases in Louisville with no deaths.  In 2014 there were no cases and in 2013 there was one non-fatal human case.

In most instances, people infected with West Nile virus either show no symptoms or relatively mild symptoms.  However, less than 1 percent of infected people develop a serious neurologic illness such as encephalitis or meningitis.  Serious illness can occur in people of any age. However, people over 60 years of age are at the greatest risk for severe disease. People with certain medical conditions, such as cancer, diabetes, hypertension, kidney disease, and people who have received organ transplants, are also at greater risk for serious illness.

Mosquitoes at locations throughout Louisville have tested positive for West Nile virus.  Mosquito samples were collected in traps as part of surveillance by the Department of Public Health and Wellness and tested by its laboratory.  Mosquitoes testing positive for West Nile were collected in ZIP codes 40205, 40208, 40211, 40212, 40214, 40215, 40216 and 40272

“West Nile infected mosquitoes are present throughout the community, and people should take the appropriate precautions,” said Dr. Joann Schulte, director of the Louisville Department of Public Health and Wellness.  

The Louisville Metro Department of Public Health and Wellness has operated a mosquito control program for more than 50 years. The department does surveillance of mosquito populations with traps strategically located throughout the community, and tests mosquitos for such diseases as Zika and West Nile virus.  In the spring the department pre-treats potential mosquito breeding sites with larvicide to prevent hatch offs.  In the summer it treats catch basins and fogs to control adult mosquito populations.

To check on areas to be fogged each week or to sign up for fogging alerts, call the mosquito hotline, 574-6641, or click here.

To log a complaint about mosquito problems in your neighborhood, call Metro Call by dialing 311 or 574-5000.

The Department of Public Health and Wellness also advises people to take the following precautions:

Avoid Mosquito Bites

  • Use insect repellents when you go outdoors. Repellents containing DEET, picaridin, IR3535, and some oil of lemon eucalyptus and para-menthane-diol products provide longer-lasting protection. To optimize safety and effectiveness, repellents should be used according to the label instructions. More information about insect repellents can be found here at http://www.cdc.gov/westnile/faq/repellent.html.
  • When weather permits, wear long sleeves, long pants and socks when outdoors. Mosquitoes may bite through thin clothing, so spraying clothes with repellent containing permethrin or another EPA-registered repellent will give extra protection. Don’t apply repellents containing permethrin directly to skin. Do not spray repellent on the skin under your clothing.
  • Take extra care during peak mosquito biting hours. Take extra care to use repellent and protective clothing from dusk to dawn or consider avoiding outdoor activities during these times.

Mosquito-Proof Your Home

  • Install or repair screens on windows and doors to keep mosquitoes outside. Use your air conditioning, if you have it.
  • Help reduce the number of mosquitoes around your home by emptying standing water from flowerpots, gutters, buckets, pool covers, pet water dishes, discarded tires and birdbaths on a regular basis.

To learn more about West Nile click here.

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