West Nile Virus (WNV) cases in Iowa have hit the second highest number since 2003. There have been three deaths in Iowa in 2018 associated with WNV. West Nile Virus is transmitted by mosquitos. Mosquitos will remain active until the first hard frost of the season.
Most people infected with WNV do not develop symptoms. About one in five infected people develop a fever and symptoms such as headache, body aches, joint pain, vomiting, diarrhea and a rash.
The best way to prevent West Nile Virus is to protect yourself from mosquito bites. Remember “COVER and DRAIN:”
COVER yourself and your home
• wear shoes, socks, long pants and long sleeves when outdoors
• apply mosquito repellent with DEET, picaridin, IR3535, or oil of lemon eucalyptus, to bare skin and clothing; read label directions
• cover doors and windows with screens to keep mosquitoes out of your house; repair holes in screens
DRAIN standing water around your home because that’s where mosquitoes lay eggs
• empty standing water from flowerpots, garbage cans, house gutters, buckets, plastic swimming pools, birdbaths, pet water dishes, or any other container where water has collected
Avoid outdoor activities at dawn and dusk when mosquitos are most active.
For more information about West Nile virus, visit: idph.iowa.gov/cade/disease-information/west-nile-virus.