The Mosquito Surveillance program, administered in partnership between Johnson County Public Health and Iowa State Extension, has received a positive test for West Nile Virus on a mosquito sample from July 10th, 2023. The goal of the program is to monitor for the presence of several species of mosquitos that can carry either West Nile Virus or Zika virus. There have been no reported cases of an infection in Johnson County.
“This is about awareness and prevention, by monitoring our numbers, we can detect and mitigate disease risk for our residents. We have not seen a surveillance test come back positive since 2021, so this is nothing to worry about, but review the ways to protect ourselves.” said Robert Thul, manager of the Environmental Health program at Johnson County Public Health. According to the CDC there has only been one case of West Nile Virus in humans reported in Iowa in 2023 from Plymouth County.
If residents are going to be outside there are simple ways to protect themselves and their family. Use an EPA registered insect repellent with the active ingredients DEET, Picaridin, IR3535, oil of lemon eucalyptus, or PMD can help prevent bites and are safe and effective. You can also wear loose-fitting, long-sleeved shirts and pants. Babies and Children under 3 years old should not use oil of lemon eucalyptus or PMD insect repellent. Stollers & Carriers can be covered with mosquito netting and clothing should cover their arms & legs.
Prevention of mosquitos spreading at home is simple, use screens on windows and doors and stop mosquitos from laying eggs in or near water. Empty anything that holds water weekly, like buckets, planters, toys, kiddie pools, birdbaths, as well as any trash containers, tires, etc. These containers should be scrubbed clean or turned over.