The season’s first human cases of the West Nile virus have been confirmed in five New York City residents, including one Queens patient, the Health Department said.
Two of the other patients live in Brooklyn, one lives in Staten Island and the fifth lives Manhattan. All five are over the age of 50.
Three of those affected by the virus had to hospitalized.
“The most effective way to reduce mosquitoes in an area is to eliminate standing water, which is where they breed and lay their eggs, and to wear mosquito repellent when you are outdoors,” Health Commissioner Dr. Mary Bassett said. “New Yorkers age 60 and older should be especially careful as they are more likely to develop serious illness if infected.”
The city’s Health Department is continuing to combat the virus by treating areas with rising West Nile virus activity and high mosquito populations.
After spraying several neighborhoods in Queens already this week, the following areas will be treated on Wednesday, Sept.10 between the hours of 8:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m. the following morning. In case of bad weather, the application will be delayed until Thursday, Sept.11 during the same hours:
Parts of South Jamaica and Springfield Gardens (bordered by 116th Avenue to the north; Sutphin Boulevard, 123rd Avenue and Inwood Street to the west; Belt Parkway to the south; and Rockaway Boulevard, 134 Avenue and Guy R Brewer Boulevard to the east).
For the application, the Health Department will spray pesticide from trucks and use a very low concentration of Anvil®, 10 + 10, a synthetic pesticide. When properly used, this product poses no significant risks to human health.
The Health Department recommends that people take the following precautions to minimize direct exposure:
- Whenever possible, stay indoors during spraying. People with asthma or other respiratory conditions are encouraged to stay inside during spraying since direct exposure could worsen these conditions.
- Air conditioners may remain on, however, if you wish to reduce the possibility of indoor exposure to pesticides, set the air conditioner vent to the closed position, or choose the re-circulate function.
- Remove children’s toys, outdoor equipment, and clothes from outdoor areas during spraying. If outdoor equipment and toys are exposed to pesticides, wash them with soap and water before using again.
- Wash skin and clothing exposed to pesticides with soap and water. Always wash your produce thoroughly with water before cooking or eating.