SuperTalk Mississippi

More West Nile and Zika diagnoses in Mississippi

JACKSON, MISS– Three new cases of West Nile Virus (WNV) and one new case of Zika Virus have been diagnosed in Mississippi. 

The Mississippi Department of Health (MSDH) confirmed the diagnoses on Monday.

The three patients diagnosed with WNV are from Perry, Copiah, and Chickasaw counties. This brings the total cases of WNV to 14 for the Magnolia state this year. Last year, 38 people were diagnosed, and one died.

Another Mississippian has been found to have Zika Virus. The Harrison County resident recently traveled to Puerto Rico, where the virus is prevalent. The total number of Mississippians found to have a travel-related case of Zika virus is up to 17.

There have been no confirmed cases of locally-transmitted Zika Virus in Mississippi.

“So far, all of our Zika cases have been travel-related,” said MSDH Deputy State Epidemiologist Dr. Paul Byers. “It remains crucial that pregnant women not travel to countries where Zika is actively being transmitted.”

Byers said right now is the peak season for WNV, and to protect oneself from mosquito-borne illnesses, the following steps should be taken:

  • Use a mosquito repellent with DEET while outside
  • Remove all sources of standing water around your home and yard to prevent mosquito breeding
  • Wear loose, light-colored long clothing to cover the arms and legs when outdoors
  • Avoid areas where mosquitoes are prevalent

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