NH DHHS - DHHS Identifies a Horse with Eastern Equine Encephalitis

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

(DHHS) is announcing that a horse from Nottingham has been identified with

the Eastern Equine Encephalitis Virus (EEE) infection. This is the first

finding of EEE in a horse this year, though a mule was identified with EEE

in September. The arboviral risk level for the town of Nottingham will

increase from low to high. The surrounding towns of Northwood, Barrington,

Lee, and Epping will increase to moderate. Surrounding towns of Deerfield

and Raymond will remain at moderate.

So far in 2014, 18 mosquito batches, 2 animals, and 2 humans have tested

positive for EEE. There has also been one positive mosquito batch

identified for West Nile Virus (WNV) this season. EEE and WNV are

transmitted by the bite of infected mosquitos. It is important that people

continue to take precautions against mosquito bites including wearing an

effective repellent, long pants and sleeves, ensuring screens are in good

repair and removing standing water from your property to prevent mosquitoes

from breeding.

“This unfortunate finding reinforces the need for residents and visitors of

New Hampshire to continue to use an effective repellent when enjoying the

beautiful outdoors until we have had a killing frost across the State,”

said State Epidemiologist Dr. Benjamin Chan.

Any horse that resides in or travels to New Hampshire during mosquito

season is at risk of becoming infected with EEE or WNV. Because of this

risk, it is recommended that horse owners consult with their veterinarians

to discuss appropriate vaccination schedules based on their risk factors.

EEE is a more serious disease in people than WNV and carries a high

mortality rate for those who contract the serious encephalitis form of the

illness. Symptoms of EEE may include high fever, severe headache, stiff

neck, and sore throat. There is no treatment for the disease, which can in

some cases lead to seizures and coma. Symptoms usually occur 4 to 10 days

after being bitten. Symptoms of WNV disease also often appear 4 to 10 days

after being bitten by an infected mosquito. If you or someone you know is

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

local medical provider.

For more information about EEE and West Nile Virus visit the DHHS website

at http://www.dhhs.nh.gov/dphs/cdcs/arboviral/index.htm and the Centers for

Disease Control and Prevention website at www.cdc.gov . For questions

contact the DHHS Bureau of Infectious Disease Control at 603-271-4496.

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(See attached file: Prevention Guidelines for WNV and EEE.doc