Florida Department of Health warns residents against West Nile virus

With the first human case of West Nile virus recently diagnosed in the state this year, the Florida Department of Health reiterated its warning to residents and visitors to protect against the dangers of the disease. 

The state's first human case for 2015 is a woman who lives in Walton County. Florida is the 39th state to have a  confirmed human case of West Nile virus this year.  

West Nile virus is transmitted through the bites of infected mosquitoes. Symptoms usually manifest two to 14 days after a person has been bitten.

An estimated 80 percent of people who have West Nile virus infections do not show any symptoms of the illness. The people who do develop symptoms typically have mild symptoms, including pain, fever, fatigue and headache. Seniors citizens and people with weakened immune systems are more prone to severe symptoms. 

"I encourage Floridians and visitors to take steps to prevent mosquito bites that can lead to illness," Dr. John Armstrong, state Surgeon General and secretary of Health, said. "Stay safe by draining any standing water near or in your home, making sure that screens are intact, and keeping your skin covered with clothing and mosquito repellent."

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Florida Department of Health

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