El Dorado County reports first human case of West Nile virus
Health officials announced Tuesday that they have confirmed the first human case of West Nile virus in 2006 in El Dorado County.
A 60-year-old man who lives on the West Slope tested positive for the disease, which is transmitted by mosquitoes. A preliminary investigation indicates the man may have acquired the virus outside of the state, according to El Dorado County Department of Environmental Management.
As of Aug. 11 there have been 38 confirmed human cases of the virus in California, and 41 counties have reported detections of the virus in birds or mosquitoes.
Three birds and two mosquito pools have tested positive for West Nile in the county. One of the birds which tested positive was identified on the Western Slope and two birds were identified in South Lake Tahoe.
Both mosquito pools were in South Lake Tahoe. No horses have tested positive in El Dorado County this year.
“West Nile virus infection can be serious, especially in people over age 50. There is no specific treatment, but we do know that in most cases infection can be prevented,” said County Health Officer, Dr. Jason Eberhart-Phillips. “Residents are encouraged to protect themselves from contracting West Nile virus by avoiding mosquito bites.”