Dallas County adds more power to West Nile virus anti-mosquito campaign

The Dallas County Commissioners Court recently approved a $350,000 contract to add to the county's capacity to fight mosquitoes carrying West Nile virus.

The new contract was signed with Vector Disease Control International of Little Rock, Arkansas. The company agreed to provide the county with 24 additional mosquito traps every week and spraying services for 5,000 miles every year, according to

Dallas County Health and Human Services plans to continue their education campaign that began last summer. The campaign includes new brochures and an earlier launch of public education services about West Nile prevention.

"If you take 2012, a once in a 50-year episode, that is causing everyone to relook at their programs, considering we don't want a repeat of last year," Dallas County Health Director Zach Thompson said, reports.

Last summer, Dallas County reported 398 confirmed human cases of West Nile resulting in 19 deaths. Before 2012, very few cases of West Nile virus had been reported in North Texas.

"If you take the totality of 2002 to 2011, there probably wouldn't have been a need to add additional spraying application. Right now, based on what we experienced in 2012, we'd rather be in overkill mode, we'd rather add additional ground application," Thompson said, reports.