EOHU is­sues West Nile alert

Le Reflet (The News) - - COLLECTIVITE / COMMUNITY -

The West Nile vi­rus has been found in some mos­qui­toes in the Eas­tern On­ta­rio re­gion. But lo­cal health au­tho­ri­ties say there is no cause for alarm.

The Eas­tern On­ta­rio Health Unit (EOHU) has a mo­ni­to­ring pro­gram in place to trap and exa­mine samples of the lo­cal mos­qui­to po­pu­la­tion for si­gns of the West Nile vi­rus. Some of the la­test sam­plings came back with po­si­tive test re­sults but Dr. Paul Rou­me­lio­tis, EOHU chief me­di­cal health of­fi­cer, says re­si­dents should re­main calm as there are still no re­ports of hu­mans in the re­gion in­fec­ted with the di­sease.

“The Eas­tern On­ta­rio Health Unit has been ac­ti­ve­ly mo­ni­to­ring mos­qui­toes for West Nile vi­rus,” sta­ted Dr. Rou­me­lio­tis in an EOHU press re­lease. “This fin­ding shows that West Nile vi­rus re­mains a concern in our area. Most cases of West Nile vi­rus infections in hu­mans ac­tual­ly oc­cur bet­ween the months of Au­gust and Oc­to­ber, so re­si­dents should be aware and take the ne­ces­sa­ry pre­cau­tions to pro­tect them­selves and their fa­mi­lies.”

West Nile vi­rus is pas­sed on to hu­mans from the bite of an in­fec­ted mos­qui­to. But not all mos­qui­toes are po­ten­tial car­riers.

There are just a few types of mos­qui­toes which can car­ry the vi­rus. Se­ve­ri­ty of in­fec­tion will va­ry bet­ween in­di­vi­duals, though for most people the risk of ill­ness is low. A ve­ry small per­cen­tage may be at risk of more se­vere re­sults if they are not trea­ted.

To re­duce the risk of West Nile vi­rus, fol­low stan­dard pre­cau­tions to prevent mos­qui­to bites. Use CSA-cer­ti­fied per­so­nal in­sect re­pel­lents which contain DEET. Keep a light coa­ting on the skin when going out­side. Wear light-co­lou­red clo­thing, in­clu­ding long-slee­ved shirts and pants, and al­so wear socks when out­side.

Avoid going out at ei­ther dusk or dawn when mos­qui­toes are most ac­tive.

To prevent mos­qui­toes from laying eggs near a house or out­buil­dings, make sure that any contai­ners, in­clu­ding bar­rels, bu­ckets, kid­die pools, sau­cers, used tires, and such are kept emp­ty of stan­ding wa­ter.

Any ponds or pud­dles should be “sal­ted” with an or­ga­nic pes­ti­cide like Vec­to­bac, which uses a bac­te­rium that preys on mos­qui­to lar­vae but is harm­less to any­thing else. Al­so keep lawns trim­med short to re­duce the amount of wet grass from dew or rain­fall.

Make sure all door and win­dow screens are in good condi­tion, with no holes, and that doors and win­dow seals are in­tact to prevent mos­qui­toes get­ting in­side the house.

More in­for­ma­tion on West Nile vi­rus and mos­qui­to pro­blem pre­ven­tion is avai­lable at the EOHU web­site at www.eohu.ca or by phone, toll-free, to the Health Line at 1-800-267-7120.

“This fin­ding shows that West Nile vi­rus re­mains a concern in our area...”

Newspapers in French

Newspapers from Canada

© PressReader. All rights reserved.