The Greater Los Angeles County Vector Control District said Friday it has confirmed seven additional mosquito samples positive for West Nile virus.
This brings the total number of samples positive for the virus within the district’s service area to 13 this year, according to a statement. The new positive samples were collected from six new areas: Winnetka, West Hills, Canoga Park, Granada Hills, La Mirada and Cerritos.
The district urged residents to take the following steps to reduce the threat:
– Eliminate standing water in clogged rain gutters, rain barrels, discarded tires, buckets, watering troughs or anything that holds water for more than a week;
– Ensure that swimming pools, spas, and ponds are properly maintained;
– Change the water in pet dishes, birdbaths and other small containers weekly;
– Request mosquitofish from your local vector control district for placement in ornamental ponds;
– Wear EPA-recommended insect repellent when outdoors where mosquitoes may be present;
– Report neglected (green) swimming pools in your neighborhood to your vector control district.
West Nile virus is endemic in Los Angeles County, and the summer heat can increase virus activity and mosquito populations. So far this year, 10 human cases of West Nile Virus have been reported in California, two of which were identified by the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health.
West Nile virus is transmitted to people and animals through the bite of an infected mosquito. There is no cure for WNV. One in five persons infected with the virus will exhibit symptoms, which can include fever, headache, body aches, nausea, or a skin rash. These symptoms can last for several days to months. One in 150 people infected with the virus will require hospitalization. Severe symptoms include high fever, muscle weakness, neck stiffness, coma, paralysis, and possibly death.