Illinois' First Documented Case of West Nile Reported in Will County

A man in Will County has the first documented case of West Nile Virus in the state of Illinois this year, the Department of Public Health announced on Thursday.

The man, a Will County resident in his 60’s, became ill at the end of June according to a press release, and with favorable conditions for mosquitoes, the department is warning residents to take precautions.

“This is typically the time of year we start to see human cases of West Nile virus in Illinois,” Director Niravy D. Shah, M.D., said in a statement. “The hot, dry conditions we’ve been seeing around the rest of Illinois, which leave small, stagnant pockets of standing water, create ideal breeding sites for the type of mosquito that does carry West Nile virus.”

According to the North Shore Mosquito Abatement District, mosquitoes in six different Chicago suburbs have tested positive for West Nile virus so far this year. Mosquitoes in Lincolnwood, Morton Grove, and Evanston have all tested positive for the disease. 

Experts recommend that residents follow the three “R’s” to avoid being infected by the virus: “Reduce,” by removing sources of standing water around your property, “Repel,” by wearing shoes and long pants and by putting on insect repellant, and “Report,” which residents can do by reporting stagnant water to local authorities so that animal control can add larvicide to water. 

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