Tarrant County Reports First West Nile Virus-Related Death

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    NEWSLETTERS

    A man in his 30s, with underlying health conditions died from complications from West Nile virus. (Published Thursday, Sep 26, 2013)

    Tarrant County Public Health reported its first death associated with West Nile virus in 2013.

    The victim is described as a south Fort Worth man in his 30s with underlying medical conditions.

    He was one of the four human cases of West Nile virus previously reported by the county, compared with 260 in 2012.

    At this time last year 11 deaths had been reported. "Even then one death is too many and it is unfortunate,"  said Dr. Anita Kurian with the Tarrant County Health Department.

    Although cooler temperatures may be right around the corner, Kurian says positive West Nile mosquito samples continue to come in and so do human cases.

    "In the past we've received cases all the way to November, December," said Kurian. "So as long as we continue to have warm temperatures, the threat remains."

    The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states, "The easiest and best way to avoid WNV is to prevent mosquito bites.

    • When you are outdoors, use insect repellent containing an EPA-registered active ingredient. Follow the directions on the package.
    • Many mosquitoes are most active at dusk and dawn. Be sure to use insect repellent and wear long sleeves and pants at these times or consider staying indoors during these hours.
    • Make sure you have good screens on your windows and doors to keep mosquitoes out.
    • Get rid of mosquito breeding sites by emptying standing water from flower pots, buckets and barrels. Change the water in pet dishes and replace the water in bird baths weekly. Drill holes in tire swings so water drains out. Keep children's wading pools empty and on their sides when they aren't being used."

    NBC 5's Amanda Guerra contributed to this report.