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Maricopa County seeing early spike in West Nile virus this summer

Posted: 5:07 PM, Jul 03, 2019
Updated: 2019-07-09 14:08:59-04
Health officials confirm first West Nile death

Maricopa County is seeing an early spike in West Nile virus this summer.

"We are seeing more than double the number of mosquitoes that carry the West Nile virus than what we’ve seen in the last five years," said Medical Director of Disease Control, Dr. Rebecca Sunenshine.

There is no vaccine or medication for the disease carried by mosquitoes.

The message this summer is for everyone young and old: “So if I had to remind people to do one thing, it would be, defend and drain. Wear insect repellent and drain the water where mosquitoes can breed around your home,” said Sunenshine.

Dr. Sunshine says those who are over 60 years old, or those who have a compromised immune system are at higher risk.

As of July 5, there are 27 cases of West Nile in Maricopa County. Sixteen of those are confirmed, the other 11 are "probable" and still being tested for West Nile.

For more information, visit the Fight the Bite website.

If you want to know if you live in a high mosquito area, or if your neighborhood has been treated for mosquitoes recently, Maricopa County has a map breaking down all those details.

Visit their website for details.