The following information was released by the DuPage County Health Department on Wednesday, September 29, 2021. The DuPage County Health Department provides news releases in Spanish here: DCHD 2021 News Releases.
The DuPage County Health Department announced on Wednesday that there are now 11 human cases of West Nile virus (WNV) that have been reported in the county in 2021. This is
an increase of six human cases since earlier this month, and it is anticipated that the numbers will continue to increase over the coming weeks.
As residents head outside for fall activities, DuPage County Health Department (DCHD) wants to remind residents to “Fight the Bite” and protect against mosquitoes by following the 4 Ds of Defense:
- Drain standing water around your home and yard;
- Defend by using insect repellent containing DEET when outdoors;
- Dress with long sleeves, long pants, and closed-toe shoes when outside;
- Wear repellant from Dusk to Dawn, when mosquitoes are most active.
The Health Department’s Personal Protection Index (PPI) remains at Level 3 (high risk) because of the number of mosquito batches testing positive for WNV. Level 3 indicates high numbers of infected
mosquitoes in most areas, and multiple human cases of WNV disease in DuPage County. View the PPI at https://www.dupagehealth.org/243/Personal-Protection-Index
The PPI provides a real-time snapshot of WNV activity, which ranges from Level 0 (zero) meaning no risk, to Level 3 announcing a high level of risk with multiple human cases of WNV. The PPI is updated every
Wednesday at 3:00 p.m. throughout the WNV season.
While most people infected with WNV do not develop any symptoms, approximately one in five people infected with WNV will develop symptoms such as fever, headache, body aches, joint pains, vomiting,
diarrhea, or rash. Less than one percent will develop a serious neurologic illness such as encephalitis or meningitis (inflammation of the brain or surrounding tissues).
People over the age of 60, and those with certain medical conditions, such as cancer, diabetes, hypertension, kidney disease, and organ transplants are at greater risk for serious illness, and rarely may progress
to coma and death.
Anyone who experiences symptoms that cause concern should contact their health care provider.
DCHD continues to monitor WNV activity by collecting and testing mosquitoes from traps located throughout the county from May through October, the West Nile virus season.
WNV activity generally decreases in the fall when cooler temperatures arrive and especially after the first frost of the season. Additional information and resources on WNV prevention are available at www.cdc.gov/westnile/index.html.