Environmental Health

West Nile Virus

During the warm summer months many of you will be enjoying various outdoor activities. Unfortunately, these activities often include uninvited guests such as mosquitoes. Certain types of mosquitoes carry disease that can be transmitted to humans. West Nile Virus first appeared in Illinois at the end of the summer of 2001. Mosquito-borne West Nile virus is likely to remain a threat to Illinois for the foreseeable future. The following are ways to reduce your risk of West Nile Virus.

Personal Protection

check mark Apply insect repellent containing DEET to exposed skin when you go outdoors.
check mark Wear Long-sleeves, long pants, and socks when outdoors. Mosquitoes may bite through thin clothing, so spraying clothes with repellent containing DEET to provide extra protection.
check mark Consider avoiding outdoor activities from dusk to dawn, which are peak mosquito biting times.
check mark Take extra care to use repellent and protective clothing during the peak hours.
Around Your Home
check mark Drain standing water where mosquitoes lay their eggs. Limit the number of places around your home for mosquitoes to breed by getting rid of items that hold water. Empty plastic wading pools, birdbaths, plant pots or drip trays every four to five days.
check mark Install or Repair Screens that are well fitting on your windows and doors.
In Your Community
check mark Clean up your neighborhood. Organize neighborhood clean up days to pick up containers from vacant lots, parks, and encourage people to keep their yards free of standing water.
check mark Dead birds may be a sign that West Nile virus is circulating between birds and the mosquitoes in an area. By reporting dead birds observed to the Rock Island County Health Department, you can play an important role in monitoring West Nile virus. Click here for more info about reporting dead birds.
For More Information Please View the Following Links:

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) - English Version ExternalLink.gif

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) - Spanish Version ExternalLink.gif

Illinois Department of Public Health - West Nile Virus ExternalLink.gif