Abington Mosquito Tests Positive for West Nile
The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection said five mosquitos have tested positive for West Nile Virus in the area since Monday; no people are infected.
An Abington mosquito tested positive for the presence of West Nile Virus earlier this week, according to a spokeswoman for the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection; the mosquito was one of 14 to test positive in the state on Monday.
Recently, mosquitoes carrying the virus have been found in Lower Merion, Bristol (two of them) and Philadelphia.
This year, a total of 71 mosquitoes have tested positive for West Nile Virus in Pennsylvania as of Tuesday, according to the CDC; two birds also tested positive during the same time period.
As for people, well ... there has been one severe case of West Nile Virus in the country so far — and it was in Texas.
Per the CDC website:
As of June 26, one [West Nile Virus] neuroinvasive disease case has been reported to CDC for 2012. Incidence maps will not be posted until at least 20 neuroinvasive disease cases have been reported nationally.
A neuroinvasive disease refers to severe cases of disease that affect a person’s nervous system, like encephalitis and meningitis, according to the site.
DEP spokeswoman Amanda Witman said her agency has been monitoring birds and mosquitoes for West Nile Virus since 2001; she said years ago there seemed to be more public awareness when it came to West Nile Virus compared to now. Witman also said fewer people are being treated for the disease in hospitals.
“We have had a steady decline in human positives over the last several years, but it’s always something to be aware of, especially when it comes to elderly people, children, or those with compromised immune systems,” Witman said.
In fact, Witman said most of the people who get the virus will fight it off and not even know that they had it.
Still, she said to take some precautions: eliminate standing water in pots, tires, wheelbarrows, wading pools and birdbaths; and if you have a pond, add fish to it or aerate it; also, dawn and dusk are when mosquitoes are the most prevalent.
Witman also said to call the DEP if you suspect there is a mosquito problem in your area.