Health experts remind residents to take precautions against West Nile Virus in southern Ill.

Health experts remind residents to take precautions against West Nile Virus in southern Ill.
West Nile Virus was detected in a mosquito in Massac County, Illinois (Source: Pexels)

MASSAC COUNTY, Ill. (KFVS) - Southern Seven Health Department officials reported the first case of West Nile Virus in Southern Illinois in July.

According to health officials the virus was detected in a mosquito in Massac County, Ill.

Southern Seven health officials urge everyone near the area to continue to take precautions.

The virus is transmitted to birds through infected mosquitoes. The insects become infected by biting infected birds.

Health officials said predatory birds like hawks, owls and scavengers may also become infected by eating other infected birds.

If you find a bird that has recently died you are urged to call the health department at 618-634-2297.

Health officials remind residents that there are no vaccines to prevent the disease. Only about one in five people infected develop a fever and other symptoms and about one in 150 develop serious illness that could be fatal.

You can reduce your risk by wearing long sleeves and pants as well as wearing insect repellent.

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