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Human case of West Nile virus reported in Atlantic County
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Human case of West Nile virus reported in Atlantic County

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Atlantic County News

Health officials are urging residents to protect themselves from mosquito-borne illness after the first human case of West Nile virus was confirmed Sunday, County Spokesperson Linda Gilmore said.

It has not been determined where the person may have been bitten, but the patient is recovering well, Gilmore said in a statement.

Atlantic County last reported a human case of West Nile virus in 2019, but officials have confirmed the virus in 17 mosquito collections this year from various areas of the county, including Buena, Egg Harbor City, Galloway Township, Hammonton, Hamilton Township, Mullica Township, Northfield, Somers Point and Weymouth Township.

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West Nile virus is carried by infected mosquitoes and can be transmitted to birds, animals and humans. There is no vaccine or specific treatment for the disease, but the best way to prevent it is to avoid mosquito bites.

Most infected humans will not develop symptoms, according to the Centers for Disease Control, but those who do may experience a fever, headache and body aches, skin rashes and swollen lymph glands.

While most patients will recover completely within two weeks, about 1 in 150 infections results in severe neurological disease, characterized by encephalitis, meningitis or acute flaccid paralysis.

Health officials encourage residents to reduce the risk of contracting and spreading the virus by using insect repellent outdoors, draining standing water, cleaning clogged gutters, and checking and repairing screen doors.

For more information, visit aclink.org/publichealth or call the county Division of Public Health at 609-645-5971. If you need assistance removing stagnant puddles or floodwater from your property, call the Office of Mosquito Control at 609-645-5948.

Contact Molly Shelly:

609-272-7241

mshelly@pressofac.com

Twitter @mollycshelly

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