First human case of West Nile virus reported in Kern County

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The Kern County Public Health Services Department confirmed the first human case of the West Nile virus in Kern County this year. 

The virus is spread to people via infected mosquitoes and is not contagious from person to person officials said in a statement Thursday.

“Summer months typically lead to an increase in mosquito activity in Kern County,” Matt Constantine, Director of Kern County Public Health Services said in a release. 

“Kern residents should take precautions to prevent being bitten by mosquitoes as this is the most risky time of year for mosquito-borne illness.”

The county provided these tips to help you avoid getting bit by mosquitoes, preventing the spread of the virus.

Decrease Your Risk of Mosquito Transmitted Infections:

  • Avoid mosquitoes at all times of the day
  • Avoid mosquito-infested areas and use mosquito repellant on exposed skin.
  • Wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants whenever you are outdoors.
  • Do not allow water to collect and stagnate in old tires, flowerpots, fountains, birdbaths, pet bowls, or other containers. These are prime breeding grounds for mosquitoes.
  • Keep swimming pools operating properly; drain water from pool covers.
  • Stock garden ponds with fish that eat mosquito larvae such as gambusia, goldfish or others.
  • Empty and scrub the walls of birdbaths and wading pools weekly to remove any attached eggs.
  • Make sure that your doors and windows have tight-fitting screens in good repair to keep mosquitoes out of your home.
  • Contact your local mosquito and vector control agency if there is a significant mosquito problem where you live, work, or play. For more information the public can call 661-321-3000 or visit our website at www.kernpublichealth.com.

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