West Nile Virus Found in New Haven

NEW HAVEN, NY – Jiancheng Huang, Public Health Director of the Oswego County Health Department, announced today that the New York State Department of Health found evidence of West Nile virus in mosquitoes in the Town of New Haven. There are no known human cases of West Nile virus in Oswego County.

Huang said the mosquitoes were collected July 17 and submitted to the New York State Health Department for testing of mosquito-borne viruses. Oswego County was notified Tuesday that the sample tested positive for West Nile virus. The county Health Department collects mosquitoes from several sites around the county to monitor for mosquito-borne illnesses such as West Nile virus and Eastern equine encephalitis.

There has been no evidence of Eastern equine encephalitis detected in Oswego County at this time.

“This is the third confirmed evidence of West Nile virus in Oswego County this year,” said Huang. “The West Nile virus was detected earlier this month in the village of Central Square.  Protecting yourself from mosquito bites is the best way to avoid mosquito-borne illnesses. In all areas of Oswego County, people should use insect repellents and continue to be proactive in protecting themselves and their families from mosquito bites.”

The Oswego County Health Department advises residents to take the following precautions:

Use insect repellent properly. Repellents containing DEET or picaridin are the most effective and should be used according to package instructions.

Whenever possible, limit outdoor activities in areas where mosquitoes are most active and between dusk and dawn which is the peak mosquito-biting time.

As weather permits, wear protective clothing such as long-sleeved shirts, long pants, shoes and socks.

In addition, people should take action to minimize mosquito populations in and around their homes and properties:

Reduce or eliminate all standing water from old tires, pails, recycling containers, flower pots, wheelbarrows, wading pools and pool covers.

Install or repair all door and window screens.

Change the water in birdbaths and horse troughs twice a week.

For more information about West Nile or other mosquito-borne viruses, call the Oswego County Health Department at 315-349-3564 or 1-800-596-3200, ext. 3564, or visit the New York State Department of Health Web site at http://www.health.ny.gov/diseases/west_nile_virus/fact_sheet.htm