The DeKalb County Board of Health reports its first human case of West Nile virus in the county. This is the fifth human case in Georgia. The individual is a 39-year-old male who lives in Decatur and is currently in the hospital with some paralysis.
As of Aug. 31, 26 states have reported 177 cases to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
“It is very unfortunate that one of our DeKalb residents has developed West Nile virus. However, I hope this will remind everyone to continue using precautions to avoid mosquito bites,” said S. Elizabeth Ford, M.D., M.B.A., District Health Director of the DeKalb County Board of Health.
The DeKalb County Board of Health advises people to take the following precautions against being bitten by mosquitoes:
- Reduce outdoor exposure at dawn and dusk, when the mosquitoes that transmit West Nile virus are most active.
- On skin, use an insect repellent containing DEET (at least 30 percent), picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus or IR3535. Apply according to label instructions.
- Spray clothing with products containing permethrin.
- Wear long-sleeved shirts, long pants and socks when outdoors, particularly at dawn and dusk and in areas with large numbers of mosquitoes.
- Reduce mosquito breeding in your yard by eliminating standing water in gutters and items such as planters, toys, wheelbarrows and old tires.
- Discourage mosquitoes from resting in your yard by trimming tall grass, weeds and vines.
- Make sure window and door screens fit tightly to keep mosquitoes out of your home.
For more information, contact the DeKalb County Board of Health at (404) 294-3700 or visit www.dekalbhealth.net/envhealth/west-nile-virus/.