Human West Nile case confirmed in Washoe County

Human case of West Nile confirmed in Bay County. (Franco Patrizia)
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RENO, Nev. (KOLO) - The Washoe County Health Department is reporting the first human case of West Nile Virus in the county in 2019.

Investigators say they cannot determine where the patient was exposed to the virus, but the person had been fishing along the Truckee River and at the Sparks Marina, but also in Fallon.

“Our first confirmed human case of West Nile Virus in 2019 should serve as a reminder to all residents and visitors to Washoe County to take precautions to protect themselves from being bitten by mosquitoes," said Washoe County District Health Officer Kevin Dick.

West Nile is commonly spread through mosquito bites. Samples collected in July and August confirmed West Nile in mosquitoes found in the areas of Longley Lane and South Rock Boulevard, Hidden Valley and Rosewood Lakes.

Authorities say only two out of ten patients develop symptoms, which can include headaches, body ache, joint pain, vomiting, diarrhea or rash. Severe cases can be fatal.

Your best defense is to avoid mosquitoes:
- Wear proper long sleeve and long pants clothing when going outdoors in the early morning and evenings.
- Use insect repellents containing DEET, which can be used safely on adults, children and infants age 2 months and older.
- Make sure the doors and windows of your home have tight-fitting screens to keep mosquitoes out.
- Clear standing water from around your back yard and home.
- Vaccinate your horses for West Nile Virus.

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