Environment
9:24 am
Wed August 7, 2013

UPDATE: West Nile Virus Found In Rhode Island

The Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management has announced the first finding of West Nile Virus in mosquitoes in the state this year.

The department routinely checks mosquitoes for both West Nile Virus, and Eastern Equine Encephalitis starting in the late spring.

Alan Getman of the DEM said West Nile Virus has been in Rhode Island for twelve years, and today’s reappearance was not unexpected.

“You know the message today is a reminder to Rhode Islanders that it’s that time of year now, to begin take seriously the exposure to mosquito bites, because these diseases are more prevalent here later in the summer," said Getman

West Nile Virus has been detected in mosquitoes just across the state line in Seekonk.

Mosquitoes in Seekonk have tested positive for West Nile Virus, none in Rhode Island have so far.
Mosquitoes in Seekonk have tested positive for West Nile Virus, none in Rhode Island have so far.
Credit Wikimedia Commons

The Town of Seekonk says it is working closely with the Massachusetts Department of Public Health, and with local mosquito control for residents who want their property sprayed. West Nile is mostly transmitted to humans through a bite by an infected mosquito.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says most people infected show no symptoms, some show symptoms of fever and headaches, and less than 1 percent of people infected develop a serious or fatal illness.

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