A deadly virus is roaming around Florida and it is time to get the bug repellent out of the cabinet. We commonly hear of mosquitos carrying West Nile, Zika Virus, and of course, Yellow Fever, but now according to News Leader, more are testing positive for Eastern Equine Encephalitis Virus (EEEV).
The report was done in Nassau County, stating that the disease was found in several sentinel chickens. While no human cases have been reported yet in the area, the virus can be transmitted to humans.
According to the CDC, EEEV is normally a rare disease, but humans exposed to the virus are at risk of developing encephalitis. In approximately 30% of the cases, the virus will lead to death or permanent neurological damage.
It is recommended that people in the community avoid getting bit by mosquitoes and use fly repellent for protection. The Nassau County Health Department has warned residents to drain the water that is not used or cover it. Mosquitoes are attracted to humidity which can lead to potential infection.
The virus is most often found around the Gulf Coast, but has been making its way up north and was recently found in three Pennsylvania counties including Erie, Carbon, and Monroe counties. Unlike Florida, this virus was found in pheasants, horses and a wild turkey. The mosquitoes can also transmit the virus to other bird species.
This deadly virus can be found in other animals too, making it easier to spread. Last year 6 people were confirmed infected with the disease, this year's numbers have not been released on the CDC's website yet.
Necessary precautions are recommended to avoid infection and transmission to others.
One of the things the health department recommends is to cover your skin with lightweight clothing and use bug repellent for those working and playing outside. The Department will be monitoring other mosquito-borne illnesses and encourage citizens to report dead birds which can carry the virus.