What to Know About the West Nile Virus in New York


The city recorded its highest number of infected mosquitoes at 1,068 positive pools across the five boroughs compared to 779 at this time last year, according to the health department

It was yet another potential health threat for weary New Yorkers to worry about in a summer punctuated by other virus threats, including a new, highly infectious Covid variant that overlapped with a monkeypox outbreak, and the discovery this month that polio was circulating in the city’s sewage. Now, the New York City Health Department has announced that the West Nile virus had been detected in two people, one in Brooklyn and another in Queens, as well as in a “record number” of infected mosquitoes throughout the city. A total of 54 cases and four deaths have been reported throughout the country this year, according to the health department’s announcement on Tuesday. In New York, the number of mosquito pools that tested positive for West Nile virus is the “highest number ever recorded” at 1,068 across the five boroughs, compared to 779 positive pools this time last year, the health department said.

The city detected its first case of West Nile virus in 1999, according to the department, andover the past decade, as few as six to as many as 30 people test positive annually, with the death rate at about 14 percent. The first of the two cases this year was detected at the end of last week. To prevent the spread of West Nile virus in the city, the health department aims to curb the mosquito population by applying larvicide to areas where they breed, including in standing water, such as around street sewer grates, as well as salt marshes. So far this season, we have conducted multiple larviciding events, treated all 150,000 catchbasins, and are currently conducting two spray events per week to control adult mosquitoes where surveillance indicates W.N.V.-positive mosquitoes are at a level that could impact public health,” said Shari S. Logan, a department spokeswoman, in a statement.

Source: This news is originally published by nytimes



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