Two people test positive for West Nile virus in Nashville - WSMV News 4

Two people test positive for West Nile virus in Nashville

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The Metro Public Health Department is reporting its first two cases of human West Nile virus in Nashville this year.

Health officials say the patients, an Inglewood resident and an East Nashville resident, have since recovered, and there is no confirmation at this time where they may have been exposed.

Since May, several batches of mosquitoes have tested positive for West Nile everywhere from Goodlettsville to West Nashville, meaning, at this point, no one is immune.

"We don't want people to say, 'Well, we don't have to worry about it now.' This is an indication that we still need to be aware and still need to take the precautions," said health department spokesman Brian Todd.

The health department says its pest management staff will be increasing mosquito trapping efforts over the next few days.

Another batch of mosquitoes has recently tested positive for the virus, which was collected near the intersection of 40th Avenue North and Dr. Walter S Davis Boulevard in west Nashville. The health department says 29 batches have tested positive in the area since May 1.

Though cooler nights do slow down mosquito activity, it isn't until the first frost of the year that the treat of West Nile is over.

"There are some cases, and these two in particular, where you start having a stiff neck, headache, fever, and you can become very ill as a result. The good news is that both of these individuals have fully recovered," Todd said.

Health officials recommend the following steps for prevention:

  • Limit time outside at dusk and nighttime
  • Wear a CDC-approved mosquito repellent
  • Consider covering up
  • Check window and door screens for needed repairs

Here's how to prevent mosquitos from gathering in your backyard:

  • Eliminate all standing water
  • Aerate ornamental pools or stock them with Gambusia fish
  • Apply mosquito dunks in standing water
  • Cut back overgrown vegetation

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