(WINDSOR, ON) – Within the last week, the Windsor-Essex County Health Unit has received two separate reports of death attributed to the West Nile virus. This is a notice to the public that WNV continues to be a risk until the area experiences temperatures below freezing.
In both cases the deaths were of elderly persons, who are especially susceptible to WNV, as are infants and those with weakened immune systems. Reported cases of WNV have been on the rise in Ontario this summer.
Most people with WNV never develop symptoms and will not know that they have the virus. Approximately 25% of the people develop West Nile fever. A small number of people, less than 1%, develop severe neuro-invasive disease.
No deaths related to the WNV have been reported since 2012.
The Health Unit, along with each municipality, will continue to monitor for West Nile Virus activity for the remainder of the season. So far this year, 29 mosquito pools have tested positive for West Nile Virus (WNV) throughout the area, and 11 cases of WNV have been reported to health unit.