West Nile Virus testing in southern Illinois

West Nile Virus testing in southern Illinois


ANNA, Ill. (KFVS) – With all the focus on the pandemic, Heartland health experts do not want you to forget about another dangerous virus we face every summer.

That virus is known as West Nile.

So far, two mosquitoes caught in traps came back positive for the infectious disease.

“One was in Pope County and one was in Massac County,” said Shawnna Rhine, outreach coordinator for the Southern Seven Health Department.

Rhine said there’s no way of knowing if we’re in for a bad mosquito season, but because they have had those two positive tests, she said they will assume there could be more.

“One of the biggest things you can do is make sure there is no standing water on your property, maybe kiddie pools, bird feeders things of that nature. You want to make sure that those are emptied out each day,” Rhine explained.

And if you can’t do that, she said they can help you.

“You can contact your local health department and they can come out and put larvicide in the water for you,” said Rhine.

She said West Nile may not be virus that’s top of mind right now, but she wanted you to know their effort to test for it continues.

“So whenever we do have a positive case, we want to make sure people are a little more vigilant in their area and doing all that they can,” she said.

Southern Seven’s testing continues through mid-September.

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