First Human Case of West Nile Virus Reported in Kern for 2017
June 30th, 2017 | by: Michelle Corson | Category: Press Releases

1800 Mt. Vernon Avenue
Bakersfield, CA 93306-3302

661-321-3000

Matthew Constantine
Director

kernpublichealth.com

June 30, 2017

Contact:
Michelle Corson
Public Relations Officer

corsonm@co.kern.ca.us

First Human Case of West Nile Virus Reported in Kern for 2017

Contact:
Michelle Corson, Public Relations Officer
(661) 868-0288

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

June 30, 2017

Bakersfield, CA – The Kern County Public Health Services Department has received confirmation of the first reported human case of West Nile virus in Kern County this year. The resident lives in the 93203 zip code.

West Nile virus is spread to people primarily through bites from infected mosquitoes and is not contagious from person to person. “This is the first reported human case of West Nile virus this season,” says Matt Constantine, Director of Kern County Public Health Services. “Kern residents should take precautions to prevent being bitten by mosquitoes particularly during summer, which is the most risky time of year for mosquito-borne illness.”

The risk of serious illness to most people is low. However, some individuals – less than one percent – can develop a serious neurologic illness such as encephalitis or meningitis. People over the age of 60 are at greatest risk of getting sick and are more likely to develop serious symptoms when infected with West Nile virus. Individuals with certain medical conditions, such as cancer, diabetes, hypertension, kidney disease and people who have received organ transplants are also at greater risk for developing severe symptoms and illness.

Decrease Your Risk of Mosquito Transmitted Infection:
 Avoid mosquitoes at all times of the day, rather than only “dusk and dawn.”
 Avoid mosquito-infested areas and use mosquito repellant on exposed skin.
 Wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants whenever you are outdoors.
 Do not allow water to collect and stagnate in old tires, flowerpots, swimming pools, birdbaths, pet bowls, or other containers. These are prime breeding grounds for mosquitoes.
 Keep swimming pools operating properly; drain water from pool covers.
 Stock garden ponds with fish that eat mosquito larvae such as gambusia, goldfish or others.
 Empty and scrub the walls of birdbaths and wading pools weekly to remove any attached eggs.
 Make sure that your doors and windows have tight-fitting screens in good repair to keep out mosquitoes.

Contact your local mosquito and vector control agency if there is a significant mosquito problem where you live or work. For more information the public can call 661-321-3000 or visit our website at kernpublichealth.com.