Hamilton, ON – September 15, 2015– The city of Hamilton has received confirmation of a human case of West Nile virus (WNV). This is the first human case for 2015. To date, 8 mosquito traps have tested positive for WNV. Human cases have also been reported in other parts of Ontario.

“The risk of being infected with West Nile virus locally continues. People should avoid being bitten by mosquitoes,” said Dr. Jessica Hopkins, Hamilton’s Associate Medical Officer of Health. “We know that taking precautions is important, such as applying insect repellent with DEET when you’re outside.”

Precautions that can be taken to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes include:

  • using a mosquito repellent containing DEET (manufacturer’s instructions should be followed carefully)
  • avoiding areas with high mosquito populations
  • wearing light-coloured, tightly-woven, loose-fitting clothing, including long sleeves, pants and a hat, to cover exposed skin (in trails or where there is dense bush)
  • making sure all windows and doors in your home have screens that are in good condition
  • taking extra precaution from dusk to dawn when mosquito activity is particularly high
  • and taking steps to reduce standing water by covering swimming pools, clearing eaves troughs of debris, and changing water in birdbaths or garden fountains at least once a week.

The City of Hamilton has a comprehensive WNV control plan that includes treating catch basins and responding to complaints of standing water. More information and regular updates are available on the City’s web site at www.hamilton.ca/westnile. To report standing water, please call 546-CITY (546-2489).

For more information contact:

Dr. Jessica Hopkins Associate Medical Officer of Health 905-546-2424  ext. 2169

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