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Valley Public Radio Staff
Wed August 13, 2014
Fresno County Sees Rise in Mosquito-Borne Illnesses
Fresno County is warning residents that mosquito-borne illnesses are on the rise.
At a press conference earlier this week, Joe Prado of the Department of Public Health reported that so far this year, Fresno County has already seen three times as many cases of West Nile Virus as in all of 2013.
Prado: “We are now up to 23 cases to date. If this trend continues we will exceed our highest year, which was back in 2005, where we had 68 cases.”
The county is also reporting its first human case of chikungunya virus, a tropical disease characterized by fever, rash, and joint pain. The victim appears to have caught the disease while traveling in the Caribbean, where it is endemic. The species of mosquito that carries the disease was found in California for the first time last summer.
Fresno County residents are advised to put screens on windows and doors, minimize standing water and report dead birds and squirrels to the city.