Yellowstone County man died after contracting West Nile Virus

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West Nile is a virus that comes from being bitten by an infected mosquito, which gets infected by feeding on infected birds.

(AUGUST 10, 2018) The Cascade City-County Health Department has confirmed Montana's first case of West Nile Virus (WNV) in a human this year.

Steps to reduce your risk of West Nile Virus include wearing long-sleeves, long trousers, using mosquito repellant, avoiding being outside during dawn and dusk, using screens on windows or doors, emptying sitting water and cleaning and chlorinating swimming pools.

To prevent catching the virus, you should take measures to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes.

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July through September is the peak West Nile virus season, State Epidemiologist Dr. Paul Buyers said.

However, it can develop into a severe illness and cause permanent damage to a person's central nervous system. You should apply insect repellent containing DEET and avoid being outside during the dawn and dusk hours when mosquito activity is highest. Follow the directions on the package. She said sites that harbor water, such as flower pots, tarps or clogged gutters, are breeding grounds for mosquitoes.

Be sure to use insect repellent and wear long sleeves and trousers at these times, or consider staying indoors during these hours.

Use screens on open windows and doors.

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Watch and listen to health department alerts and warnings about mosquito disease outbreaks. It is the state's first human case of West Nile virus since 2015.

Expressing concern over the number of reported cases (133), the ISA called on the Health Ministry and the Attica Regional Authority to work with experts and local authorities to deal with the virus's spread which, it said, is having a financial cost, as it is also impacting the tourism industry.

An even more unsafe strain of West Nile affects one out of 150 people. A Pearl River County resident's infection was confirmed in July.

The CDC has reported less than 20 cases every year dating back to 2013.

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