On Wednesday, the Department of Public Health has confirmed the first case of West Nile Virus in El Paso this season.
The patient is a man in his early 20’s who lives in West El Paso. Authorities say he has no associated medical conditions and is recovering from the virus.
“It seems as though we are beginning the mosquito season later than usual this year,” said Department of Public Health Lead Epidemiologist Fernando Gonzalez. “We know we have mosquitoes infected with West Nile Virus around El Paso, and need to make sure we stay vigilant about protecting ourselves from getting bitten.”
There were 14 human cases of West Nile confirmed in El Paso last year and the most recent deaths associated with the disease were two deaths in 2015.
The Department of Public Health is asking residents to help ‘fight the bite’ by reducing the spread of mosquito borne diseases using these prevention methods:
- DEET – Use insect repellents that contain DEET when outdoors.
- DRESS – Wear long sleeves, long pants, and socks when outdoors.
- DUSK and 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.