ND Dept. of Health Begins West Nile Virus Surveillance - KXNet.com - Bismarck/Minot/Williston/Dickinson-KXNEWS,ND

ND Dept. of Health Begins West Nile Virus Surveillance

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It's that time of the year again, mosquito season, so the Department of Health is urging people to protect themselves from the West Nile virus.

They are currently testing sick horses, pets and dead birds for any signs of the virus.

They are also trapping and testing mosquitoes across North Dakota.

Last year, 127 West Nile virus cases in humans were reported.

The Department of Health says West Nile can cause high fever, headaches, stiff neck, altered mental status and sometimes even death.

"There is unfortunately no treatment or vaccine for the West Nile Virus... We want to still encourage people to still enjoy the outdoors, still enjoy the activities that they love doing outside but to take precautions such as insect repellant when they are going outdoors, making sure that they're wearing protective clothing if possible wearing long sleeves and long pants, that's going to protect them from insect bites," Alicia Lepp with the Department of Health said.

Lepp says the greatest risk for West Nile transmission is during July and August.

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