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Seventeen Additional Mosquito Samples Test Positive for West Nile Virus

Health Commissioner asks residents to eliminate stagnant water near homes.

Suffolk County Health Services (SCDHS) Commissioner James L. Tomarken announced that 29 additional mosquito samples have tested positive for West Nile virus. The mosquito samples, collected between August 20-23, were from locations in  Huntington Station, Northport, Greenlawn, Dix Hills, Bay Shore, Nesconset (2), Farmingville, West Babylon (2), Lindenhurst, Jamesport, Aquebogue, Port Jefferson Station, Ridge, East Setauket and Yaphank.  To date this year, 192 mosquito samples and 29 birds have tested positive for the virus.

As previously reported two human cases of WNV have been reported in Suffolk County this year. Both persons had been hospitalized and have recovered and been released from the hospital.

“Though the number of mosquitoes testing positive is historically high for this time of year, we cannot predict if the numbers will continue to be high,” said Dr. Tomarken. “There are many factors, such as weather, that affect mosquito population and activity. Given that the numbers are high and we are finding samples in virtually all parts of the county, we ask that residents be especially vigilant about reducing their exposure to mosquitoes whenever they can.”

Dr. Tomarken asks residents to reduce the mosquito population around homes, by eliminating stagnant water where mosquitoes breed.  The county offers an informative bulletin entitled “Mosquitoes and Mosquito-borne Illnesses,” which contains tips on personal protection and repellents. To download the brochure, visit http://www.suffolkcountyny.gov/Portals/0/Documents%20and%20Forms/Health%20Services/Seasonal/Mosquito%20Brochure.pdf

Dead birds found on area properties may indicate the presence of West Nile virus in the area. To report dead birds, call the West Nile virus hotline in Suffolk County at 631-787-2200 from 9 a.m to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday.  To report mosquito problems or stagnant pools of water, call the Department of Public Works’ Vector Control Division at 631-852-4270.

For medical questions related to West Nile virus, call 631-853-3055.

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