The New York City Health Department reports nine cases of West Nile virus this year so far. Five of those cases were in Queens and included one fatality.
While the agency cannot release details, it reports the fatality was a man over 60 years of age who became sick in August. Prior to falling ill, the man traveled outside the city, so it’s not possible to determine where he became infected.
The virus – which causes mild flu-like symptoms – is most prevalent during the months of August and September and typically lasts through October. The elderly and those with weak immune systems are susceptible to serious illness.
The Department of Health reported 42 cases of West Nile virus and one fatality, last year. Overall, the city has recorded 28 deaths and 249 cases over an 11-year-period.
Remove areas of standing water as the insects can breed in these environments which include buckets, swimming pools and the like. You can report standing water by dialing 311.
Replace doors and windows with tight-fitting screens.
When outside from dusk to down – when the insects are most active – use an insect repellent that contains DEET. Also wear protective clothing which includes long sleeves and pants.