Long Beach reports season’s first case of West Nile virus

Long Beach health officials on Wednesday reported the city’s first case of West Nile virus this mosquito season, which is a virus that can cause serious illness and death in rare cases.

The person who was diagnosed is in their 60s and was hospitalized, but is now recovering at home, officials said.

As of Sept. 16, 54 cases of West Nile have been reported in California, including eight in Los Angeles County.

West Nile-positive mosquitos were detected in Long Beach earlier this month.

The virus is caused by the bite of an infected mosquito. Most people who are infected have no symptoms, but signs of the virus can include fever, body aches, rash, nausea, vomiting and headache.

Health officials urge the public to take precautions to prevent the spread of West Nile, which include:

  • Applying insect repellent with EPA-registered active ingredients DEET, picaridin, IR3535 or lemon eucalyptus before going outside.
  • Wearing long-sleeved shirts and long pants if spending time outside during dawn and dusk, when virus-carrying mosquitoes are most active.
  • Installing or repairing door and window screens.
  • Dumping and draining standing water around your home.
  • Reporting mosquitoes and learning more about mosquito prevention by visiting longbeach.gov/mosquitoes.
  • Reporting dead birds online or call 877-WNV-BIRD (968-2473).

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