The University of Chicago News Office
August 28, 2002 Press Contact: Larry Arbeiter
(773) 702-8360 (w)

West Nile Virus Guidelines

With cases of West Nile Virus reported in every state east of the Rocky Mountains, health professionals suggest taking some common-sense preventative measures. According to the Centers for Disease Control, risk of actual infection is low, with symptoms occurring in only a small number of genetically susceptible individuals who are bitten by infected mosquitoes. The CDC advises that simple prevention methods—such as avoiding the out-of-doors at dawn and dusk whenever possible and wearing mosquito repellant and long-sleeved shirts—are the best defense against West Nile Virus.

The University’s pest control provider has been instructed to monitor conditions on campus, and facilities personnel will be draining areas of standing water, which can serve as breeding pools for mosquitoes. Crows and blue jays are particularly vulnerable to the illness, and while dead birds are not a health threat in themselves, they should be disposed of properly. Please report any dead crows or blue jays found on campus to the University Safety Office at 702-9999. Elsewhere in Chicago, dial 311 for current city disposal procedures.

For more information on West Nile Virus and prevention measures, please visit the following web sites:

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

City of Chicago Department of Public Health
Last modified at 01:52 PM CST on Wednesday, August 28, 2002.

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