Mosquitos in Suffolk County have been tested positive for the West Nile virus for the first time this year.
County officials said Thursday that two mosquito samples carrying the virus were collected on July 6 from Nesconset and July 8 from Northport. Residents are advised to remove standing water near their homes and use repellents when outdoors.
“The confirmation of West Nile virus in mosquito samples indicates the presence of West Nile virus in the area,” Suffolk County Health Commissioner Dr. Gregson Pigott said in the announcement. “While there is no cause for alarm, we advise residents to cooperate with us in our efforts to reduce exposure to West Nile virus and other mosquito-borne diseases.”
Individuals who are most at risk for severe infection include those over 50 years of age and those with chronic illness or compromised immune systems. These individuals are urged to take precautions to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes during mosquito season.
Most people don't develop symptoms, but some experience fever, headache, vomiting and diarrhea. In rare cases, people develop severe illnesses like meningitis, which can be deadly.