Toronto Public Health confirms first positive mosquito test for West Nile Virus this year

Jul 6 2017, 2:09 pm

Toronto Public Health has confirmed the first positive mosquito test for West Nile Virus in Toronto for 2017.

Once every week between mid-June until mid-September, Toronto Public Health sets 40 mosquito traps across the city. The mosquitos are then collected and taken to a lab for identification and testing for West Nile Virus.

“While the risk of becoming infected with West Nile Virus in Toronto is low, now is a good time to remind residents of the ways they can protect themselves from mosquito bites and help reduce the risk of infection,” said Dr. Eileen de Villa, Toronto’s Medical Officer of Health, in a release.

Toronto Public Health recommends the following tips to protect from mosquito bites:

• Wear light-coloured, long-sleeved shirts and pants when outdoors.
• Apply insect repellent containing DEET or icaridin and follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
• Take extra care during peak mosquito biting time (dusk and dawn) by using mosquito repellent and wearing protective clothing.
• Remove standing water from your property, where mosquitoes can breed.
• Ensure your home has tight-fitting screens on windows and doors.

In 2016, there were 19 confirmed human cases of West Nile Virus. Toronto Public Health reports that in 2017 there have been no human cases of the virus reported in Toronto.

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