NPR News for Central and Northern Michigan
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

West Nile Virus identified in Saginaw County

Flickr User U.S. Department of Agriculture

Health officials in Saginaw County say they have identified a serious virus transmitted from mosquitoes to humans.

It’s the first positive identification of West Nile Virus in mosquitos this year. Lynn Sutfin is a spokesperson for the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services. She says 40 Michiganders contracted West Nile Virus last year.

“Individuals who are most at risk are adults 60 and older. The symptoms include high fever, confusion, muscle weakness and a severe headache. It could potentially be very serious and include some neurological illness such as meningitis and encephalitis”  

Sutfin says people exhibiting similar symptoms should seek medical attention. West Nile Virus led to one death in Michigan last year and more than 100 nationwide. Sutfin says to prevent the spread of the disease, do not leave standing water in bird baths, old tires, empty pots or other water catchment receptacles.