The Massachusetts Department of Public Health announced Aug. 2 that West Nile virus (WNV) has been detected in mosquitoes collected from South Hadley on July 28 in the southeastern quadrant of town.
WNV is most commonly transmitted to humans by the bite of an infected mosquito. The mosquitoes that carry this virus are common throughout the state and are found in urban as well as more rural areas. While WNV can infect people of all ages, people over the age of 50 are at higher risk for severe infection.
The South Hadley Board of Health would like to remind residents that we are still considered at low risk but that by taking a few, common-sense precautions, people can help to protect themselves and their loved ones:
- Using insect repellents
- Wearing long-sleeved clothing
- Scheduling outdoor activities to avoid the hours around dawn and dusk
- Repairing damaged window screens
- Removing standing water from the areas around your home
Information about WNV and risk maps/reports of current WNV virus activity in Massachusetts can be found on the MDPH website at https://www.mass.gov/info-details/massachusetts-arbovirus-update