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Sep212012

NH DHHS Identifies Positive Tests for EEE in Animals in Derry and Fitzwilliam

New Positives Leads to Increase in Public Risk



Concord, NH - The New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services

(DHHS) today announces positive test results for eastern equine

encephalitis (EEE) in two emus in the Cheshire County town of Fitzwilliam

and in a horse in the Hillsborough County town of Derry. These findings

necessitate the elevation of the risk level in those communities from

“remote” to “high.” The risk level for surrounding towns will also be

elevated on the risk map to “moderate.” In addition the towns of Seabrook,

South Hampton, and Newton have all had their risk level elevated to

moderate following the identification of a person in the northeastern part

of Massachusetts with EEE.



“These results highlight the fact that these illnesses affect not just

mosquitoes, but animals and of course people too,” said NH’s Public Health

Director Dr. José Montero. “It is also an indication that mosquitoes do

not respect borders, and as a result can infect animals and people in any

corner of our State. We know this has been a particularly bad season for

both EEE and West Nile Virus (WNV). In fact, in our bordering states there

have been several deaths reported as a result of EEE.”



So far this season NH’s Public Health Lab has tested 4,018 batches of

mosquitoes. Of those, 40 have tested positive for WNV, 3 tested positive

for EEE. One person was also diagnosed with WNV. The test results being

announced today are the first animals found positive for EEE and there have

been no positive tests for animals with WNV.



“We want people to remember that until we have a Statewide hard frost,

there is still a risk of contracting these illnesses from mosquito bites.

We advise people to take appropriate measures to prevent being bitten,”

stated Montero.



EEE is a serious disease that carries a high mortality rate for those who

contract the serious encephalitis form of the illness. Symptoms may include

high fever, severe headache, stiff neck, and sore throat. There is no

treatment for the disease, which can lead to seizures and coma. Symptoms

usually occur 4 to 10 days after being bitten. Symptoms of WNV disease

often appear 4 to 10 days after being bitten. If you or someone you know is

experiencing flu-like symptoms, including fever and headache, contact your

local medical provider.



Questions about EEE and WNV can be answered by calling the toll free

EEE/West Nile Virus information line at 1-866-273-6453. You can also find

extensive information about both diseases on our website www.dhhs.nh.gov.

# # #

Prevention Guidelines for West Nile Virus and

Eastern Equine Encephalitis

NH Department of Health and Human Services, Division of Public Health Services


1. Eliminate standing water and other mosquito breeding locations around

your property. Please do not attempt to drain or alter natural waterbodies

for mosquito control, since the management of ponds and wetlands is

regulated by the Department of Environmental Services and any planned

alterations will require a permit before work may begin. In warm weather,

mosquitoes can breed in any puddle that lasts more than 4 days!

Remove old tires from your property.

Dispose of tin cans, plastic containers, ceramic pots, or other

containers. Don’t overlook containers that have become overgrown

by aquatic vegetation.

Drill holes in the bottom of recycling containers that are left

outside.

Make sure roof gutters are clean and draining properly.

Clean and chlorinate swimming pools and hot tubs. If not in use, keep

empty and covered and keep covers free of standing water.

Aerate garden ponds or stock them with fish.

Turn over wheelbarrows and change water in birdbaths at least twice

weekly.

Turn over plastic wading pools when not in use.

Remind or help neighbors to eliminate breeding sites on their

properties.



2. Be aware of where mosquitoes live and breed and keep them from entering

your home.

Mosquitoes lay their eggs in standing water. Weeds, tall grass, and

bushes provide an outdoor home for adult mosquitoes, including

several species commonly associated with West Nile virus and

Eastern Equine Encephalitis.

Mosquitoes can enter homes through unscreened windows or doors or

broken screens. Make sure that doors and windows have

tight-fitting screens. Repair or replace all screens in your home

that have tears or holes.

Resting mosquitoes can often be flushed from indoor resting sites by

using sweeping motions under beds, behind bedside tables etc. and

once in flight, exterminated prior to sleeping at night.



3. Protect yourself from mosquito bites.

If outside during evening, nighttime, and dawn hours when mosquitoes

are most active and likely to bite, children and adults should

wear protective clothing such as long pants, long-sleeved shirts,

and socks.

Consider the use of an effective insect repellent, such as one

containing DEET. A repellent containing 30% or less DEET (N,

N-diethyl-methyl-meta-toluamide) for children and adults. Use DEET

according to the manufacturer's directions. Children should not

apply DEET to themselves. Repellents that contain Picaridin, oil

of lemon eucalyptus, or IR3535 have also been determined to be

effective.

Vitamin B, ultrasonic devices, incense, and bug zappers have not been

shown to be effective in preventing mosquito bites.



For more information on West Nile Virus or Eastern Equine Encephalitis,

call the NH Department of Health and Human Services toll-free West Nile

Virus Information Line at

866–273–NILE (6543), or visit the DHHS website at www.dhhs.nh.gov

 

See attached file: RiskMap_September_20_12.pdf

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