Las Vegas – The Southern Nevada Health District (SNHD) mosquito surveillance program has identified the first West Nile virus positive mosquitoes in the 89074 zip code. The analysis was conducted by the Southern Nevada Public Health Laboratory. West Nile virus (WNV), the leading cause of mosquito-borne disease in the continental United States, is most commonly transmitted to humans through the bite of an infected mosquito. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), there are no vaccines or drugs to treat WNV in humans.
About 1 in 5 people infected with WNV develop fever and other symptoms. About 1 in 150 people infected will develop a serious, sometimes fatal, disease. WNV in 2010 Clark County has reached unprecedented activity in 2019, with 43 human cases, including one death. There was minimal WNV activity in 2020, 2021 and 2022. So far in 2023, no human cases of WNV have been reported in Clark County.
SNHD launched its 2023 mosquito surveillance campaign in May. During mosquito season, SNHD environmental health workers place 50 to 60 traps a day for weeks at a time in parks, wash stations, wetlands and other breeding areas throughout the Valley. Mosquitoes are captured in the field and transported to the laboratory at SNHD’s main public health center, where they are sorted and dissected. The samples are tested for harmful arboviruses. So far this year, SNHD staff have set more than 1,100 mosquito traps and tested more than 7,000 mosquitoes.
The Bite The Fight the Bite campaign urges people to avoid standing water, which is an ideal habitat for mosquito larvae. Prevent mosquito bites by taking Appropriate precautions; and report mosquito activity to the SNHD surveillance program at (702) 759-1633. To report a green pool, people should contact their local code enforcement agency. More information is available at SNHD. website.
“The positive mosquito results indicate that West Nile virus is active in southern Nevada, and residents should be careful to avoid mosquito breeding sites while protecting themselves from mosquito bites,” said District Health Officer Dr. Fermin Legen. According to Dr. Legen, National Mosquito Awareness Week is from June 18 to 24, which is an opportunity to shed light on the importance of controlling mosquitoes in the community and protecting public health.