Important Health Announcements
During the summer months, mosquitoes are regularly monitored at sites around the state for mosquito-borne diseases. Each week, mosquitoes are collected at various locations around the state by the Vermont Agency of Agriculture. These collections of mosquitoes are tested for diseases that affect Vermonters, such as West Nile Virus and Eastern Equine Encephalitis. The Health Department summarizes this data weekly on its mosquito surveillance webpage, and compiles data each year in an annual surveillance report.
Mosquitoes collected in Essex have tested positive for West Nile virus at the Vermont Department of Health Laboratory. As of September 9, the Department of Health Laboratory tested 55 mosquito pools – a group of up to 50 mosquitoes of the same species – collected in Essex. Two of these pools tested positive for West Nile virus, the most recent positive mosquito pool was collected on 9/3/2019.
When the virus is transmitted to humans through mosquito bites, most people don’t get sick, but some get symptoms like fever, joint pain, vomiting and diarrhea. The sickness can become quite serious in some people, and those age 50 or older are at the highest risk.
Vermont hasn’t had any reported human cases so far this year. Here are a few tips to help keep it that way:
• Wear long sleeves and long pants when you’re outside.
• Use EPA-registered insect repellant.
• Get rid of standing water where mosquitoes like to breed.
Learn what works when it comes to mosquito bite prevention: http://www.healthvermont.gov/mosquito
For up to date important health notices on topics such as Avian Flu, West Nile, water quality, public health tracking, and much more, visit the State’s website: http://agriculture.vermont.gov/.
Ticks are already back out in full force. Information on how to stay tick safe can be found here: http://healthvermont.gov/immunizations-infectious-disease/mosquito-tick-zoonotic-diseases/lyme-disease.
The Department also maintains a Tick Tracker website where individuals can report ticks: http://healthvermont.gov/ticktracker/index.aspx.