Wednesday, October 9, 2013
With 12 new cases in the past week, the total number of West Nile virus cases in Kansas this year is up to 32.
"Cases are on the rise in Kansas. We want to bring this to everyone's attention as we expect an increase in this disease before winter is here, and we strongly encourage the use of methods that prevent mosquito bites," said Robert Moser, M.D., KDHE Secretary and State Health Officer.
As of October 7, there have been seven confirmed cases in Sedgwick County, six in Barton County, three in Johnson County, two cases in both Sherman and Wyandotte Counties and one case each in Atchison, Butler, Chautauqua, Decatur, Ellis, Logan, Marshall, Republic, Rice and Saline Counties.
There have been two deaths reported in Kansas this year.
The virus can be spread to people by mosquito bites but is not contagious person-to-person. Symptoms can range from a slight headache and low-grade fever to swelling of the brain or brain tissue and in rare cases, death. Those who have had the virus before are considered immune.
Cases are most common in the late summer and early fall months. Last year, 57 cases were reported in Kansas.