Possible 2nd case of West Nile in Williamson County ruled out

The Williamson County and Cities Health District (KXAN Photo)
The Williamson County and Cities Health District (KXAN Photo)

GEORGETOWN, Texas (KXAN) – The Williamson County and Cities Health District was investigating a possible second human case of the West Nile Virus.

The county says a woman who is over 50 years old has been diagnosed with meningitis. Wednesday, they were able to rule out the woman having West Nile.

The woman lives within a mile from where a man, also over 50 years old, may have contracted the virus recently. The health district says the man likely has the disease, but they can’t confirm it completely because of a problem with the sample provided. The city of Georgetown has been spraying insecticide near the area where the two live, just west of Interstate 35 and south of Williams Drive in Georgetown. Another round of spraying is scheduled for Tuesday night after 9 p.m.

“That may be simply random, but certainly we want to look into that and follow the case and see what the blood results tell us,” said  John Teel, the executive director of the health district. Nine positive samples of West Nile have been collected this year from traps around the county.

Teel said as birds migrate south they are infecting mosquitoes here, “We just have to be serious about preventing mosquito bites certainly through Thanksgiving, based on the weather if it stays warm this could be a threat through Christmas.”

Preventing a bite

Mosquitoes breed in standing or stagnant water. Eliminating places where mosquitoes can breed and reducing the chances of mosquito bites are the most effective lines of defense. As part of its Fight the Bite campaign, the Health District recommends the “3 Ds” of mosquito safety.

  • Drain standing water in flower pots, pet dishes, or clogged gutters so mosquitoes don’t have a place to breed and treat water that can’t be drained;
  • Defend by using an EPA-approved insect repellent; and,
  • Dress in long sleeves and pants when outdoors.

For more information, go to the WCCHD website at www.wcchd.org or visit the Texas Department of State Health Services West Nile website at www.txwestnile.org.

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