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Second human West Nile virus case identified in Washoe County
Individual showed typical signs of infection

Media Release
For Immediate Release

Contact: Scott Oxarart
775.328.2414 or 775.276.1021

RENO, NV – A second individual has tested positive for West Nile Virus (WNV) in Washoe County health officials confirmed today. The individual, who lives in the Rosewood Lakes area of Reno, was hospitalized for several days with the neuroinvasive form of WNV. 

According to Washoe County Health District Communications Manager Phil Ulibarri, the individual exhibited the typical symptoms of WNV infection, namely a high fever (103 degrees Fahrenheit), headache, stiff neck, muscle and joint pain, and a history of mosquito bites.  Lab tests confirmed the virus after the patient was released from the hospital. 

The announcement coincides with news of a horse in Washoe Valley being infected by WNV, highlighting the need for people to protect themselves from being bitten by mosquitos, Ulibarri stressed. 

The Washoe County Health District Vector Borne Disease Prevention Program will be conducting fogging in areas where know mosquito activity is present, and helicopter larviciding is scheduled for Thursday, September 3. But, health officials emphasize the importance of people taking precautions to keep mosquitos from biting. 

How to avoid mosquito bites:

  • Wear proper clothing and repellent if going outdoors when mosquitos are active, especially in the early morning and evening.
  • Use repellants containing DEET, picaradin, oil of lemon eucalyptus or IR3535 which are the best when used according to label instructions. Repellents keep the mosquitos from biting you. DEET can be used safely on infants and children 2 months of age and older.
  • Make sure that your doors and windows have tight-fitting screens to keep mosquitos out. Repair or replace screens with tears or holes.
  • Clear standing water and any items from around homes that can be potential mosquito breeding-grounds, including small puddles, pools, planters, children’s sandboxes, wagons or toys, underneath and around faucets, as well as plant saucers and pet bowls.
  • Vaccinate your horses for WNV. 

The Washoe County Health District’s Communicable Disease Program investigates all reported cases of diseases like WNV. Healthcare providers are encouraged to consider a WNV infection as your differential diagnosis among patients who are ill and have recently experienced mosquito bites. Residents may report mosquito activity to the Health District at 785-4599 or 328-2434. 

More information on WNV and the Washoe County Health District’s Vector-Borne Disease Prevention Program can be found at http://bit.ly/1SCOM2g.

Call 311 to find resources, ask questions, and utilize Washoe County services. Learn More »
Call 311 to find resources, ask questions, and utilize Washoe County services. Learn More »