First human case of West Nile virus reported in Colorado for 2020

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(Photo: MGN Online)

DENVER (KDVR) – A Delta County resident is Colorado’s first human case of West Nile virus for 2020. The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) said the case was reported on Wednesday.

“When the virus is present, people are at risk, but there are simple precautions people can take to protect themselves,” said Jennifer House, state public health veterinarian. “Use an effective insect repellent, wear protective clothing, or stay indoors when mosquitoes are active, and mosquito-proof your home.” 

The CDPHE says the West Nile virus is most commonly spread to people by the bite of an infected mosquito.

Symptoms can include fever, headache, nausea and vomiting, muscle aches and weakness, and rash, but most infected people don’t exhibit any symptoms.

If you believe you have contracted the virus, seek medical help immediately.

To prevent mosquito bites, officials offer the “four D’s” to help keep the insects at bay:

  • DRAIN standing water around your house weekly. Remember to drain water from tires, cans, flowerpots, clogged rain gutters, rain barrels, toys and puddles.
  • DUSK and DAWN are when mosquitoes are most active. Limit outdoor activities and take precautions to prevent mosquito bites during these times.
  • DEET is an effective ingredient to look for in insect repellents. Other repellents containing picaridin, IR3535, oil of lemon eucalyptus or para-menthane-diol are also effective against mosquitoes.
  • DRESS in long sleeves and pants where mosquitoes are active.

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