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Doctors warn of West Nile virus after a surge in cases in Michigan



by Anna Giles | Newschannel 3

Doctors warn of the West Nile virus after a surge in Michigan Falls. (19659003) KALAMAZOO, Mich. –

Rain in the region Tuesday will be the perfect breeding ground for mosquitoes as concerns about the West Nile virus in West Michigan arise.

Doctors and pest control experts share important information about the virus to keep your family safe after a dramatic increase in Kent County mosquitoes was positive and was discovered in birds in Kalamazoo County.

"We identified 5 birds. These are the highest we have had in the last 6 or 7 years," said James Rutherford, Health Commissioner of Kalamazoo County Health Authority

In 2018, there were eight confirmed cases of human West Nile Virus in Michigan

"Most people with West Nile virus probably do not even know they've got it – they could have mild conditions," said Rutherford

The virus can be serious and even deadly become. A man in Kent County died of complications from West Nile on Monday.

Doctors say the symptoms of West Nile are pretty vague and very similar to the flu, things like fatigue and a stiff neck.

The Michigan State Web site provides more information about the West Nile.

The best way to prevent West Nile is to eliminate mosquito breeding grounds and protect themselves with mosquito repellent.

Josh Gettig owns Mite-E, which exterminates in Kalamazoo. He said the beginning of the summer was busy.

"The whole month of May and June were just incredible mosquito calls, why? We had floods everywhere," said Gettig.

Gettig said otherwise than with mosquito spray, "You can protect your family by eliminating breeding grounds."

"Wheelbarrow full of water, make sure your pool is clean and up to date, because wherever these mosquitoes breed, they will multiply," he said]
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