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Bay County Health Reports Second Human Case Of West Nile Virus

A stethoscope
Marcelo Leal

Bay County health officials are reporting an additional human case of the West Nile Virus. They’re urging residents to remain diligent in protecting themselves from mosquitoes.

Last month, Bay County reported its first human case of the West Nile Virus: a blood donor who showed no symptoms, like most people who have the mosquito-borne illness. Now, with this second case, health department spokeswoman Heather Kretzer says officials are especially worried for certain residents.

“People that are most at risk or have the more serious symptoms are people who are over 60 years of age or that have certain medical conditions, like cancer, diabetes, hypertension, kidney disease, or people who have received organ transplants,” she said. “Now, those affect 1 in 150 people and that can actually affect their Central Nervous System and can cause things, like encephalitis, or meningitis. Again, it’s very rare, but we want those people who are especially at risk to make sure they are taking precautions.”

Precautions can include covering your skin with clothing or mosquito repellent and removing any nearby standing water.

For more news updates, follow Sascha Cordner on Twitter: @SaschaCordner.

Sascha Cordner has more than ten years of public radio experience. It includes working at NPR member station WUFT-FM in Gainesville for several years. She's worked in both radio and TV, serving in various capacities as a reporter, producer and anchor. She's also a graduate of the University of Florida with a bachelor's degree in telecommunications. She is the recipient of 15 awards from the Associated Press, Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ), and Edward R. Murrow. Her award-winning stories include her coverage on the infamous “Dozier School for Boys” and a feature titled "Male Breast Cancer: Lost in the Sea of Pink." Currently, Sascha serves as the host and producer of local and state news content for the afternoon news program "All Things Considered" at WFSU. Sascha primarily covers criminal justice and social services issues. When she's not reporting, Sascha likes catching up on her favorite TV shows, singing and reading. Follow Sascha Cordner on Twitter:@SaschaCordner.