by Chris Davis
JACKSON, Miss.--With 29 new cases of West Nile being reported today, the state's total is now at 169. That's 117 more cases than were reported all of 2011.
The Mississippi Dept. of Health issued a press release Monday morning listing the new cases:
Adams (2), Claiborne (1), Harrison (1), Hinds (5), Humphreys (1), Jackson (1), Jefferson Davis (1), Lamar (1), Lauderdale (1), Madison (5), Perry (1), Rankin (6), Sunflower (1), Warren (1) and Yazoo (1).
The most cases, as has been the case all year, were in the three Jackson metro counties. It should be noted that this area has one of the highest concentrations of people in the state, possibly making the cases proportionate.
As cases have increased, counties in areas that are particularly prone to mosquitoes have increased their spraying efforts, some even doubling the spraying. But, the chemicals only reach a few hundred feet.
The Health Department says it is now working with counties to increase the effectiveness of spraying by creating maps that show where spraying might be more effective. The agency also says there are new educational efforts that include providing materials to schools, civinc groups, churches and to athletic associations to get public service announcements out at football games and other athletic events.
Those educational materials include the following advice: remove standing water where mosquitoes hang out. Use spray that includes DEET or other EPA approved substances and don't go out during peak mosquito hours.