Photo courtesy UTEP
The Department of Public Health is urging residents to prevent mosquito breeding and avoid mosquito bites in order to avoid disease.
“Vulnerable populations for COVID-19 are some of the same individuals who could be affected greatly by a disease like West Nile Virus,” said Angela Mora, Director of Public Health. “We need to be vigilant and proactive in order to prevent mosquito breeding and mosquito bites.”
Officials say certain individuals are at higher risk of developing serious illnesses from the mosquito-borne West Nile Virus such as the elderly and those with certain medical conditions, such as cancer, diabetes, hypertension, kidney disease, and people who have received organ transplants.
Other mosquito-borne diseases that have yet to present local cases, but threaten our community’s health include Zika, Chikungunya and Dengue.
All can have devastating effects on those who are infected. At present there is no scientific evidence to suggest mosquitoes spread COVID-19.
El Pasoans can also help ‘fight the bite’ by using these prevention methods:
- DEET – Use insect repellents that contain DEET when outdoors.
- DRESS – Wear long sleeves, long pants, and socks when outdoors.
- DUSK & DAWN – Although mosquitoes associated with Zika can be active throughout the day, residents should take extra care during peak mosquito biting hours (from dusk to dawn) or consider avoiding outdoor activities during these times.
- DRAIN – Drain standing water from flowerpots, gutters, buckets, pool covers, pet water dishes, and birdbaths. After rains or lawn watering, residents are asked to “tip and toss” any standing water they find outside.
Residents can report mosquito breeding and standing water by calling 3-1-1.