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Box 2003
Weyburn, Saskatchewan
S4H 2Z9
Tel: (306) 842-8399
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Protect yourself from West Nile Virus

Sun Country’s Medical Health Officer, Dr. Shauna Hudson wants to notify Sun Country Health Region residents that the risk of West Nile virus is increasing and that residents need to take precautions to protect themselves from infection with West Nile virus this long weekend and throughout August.

This past week the number of Culex tarsalis mosquitoes caught in our mosquito surveillance traps increased significantly and are beginning to peak. In Estevan there were over 2,500 Culex tarsalis mosquitoes per night in our surveillance traps and in Weyburn there just over 400 per night.

With the current conditions, we expect that that we will soon be identifying West Nile virus positive mosquitoes in the surveillance traps in Sun Country Health Region. There have been two positive mosquito pools (mosquitoes caught in traps that are infected with West Nile virus) reported from Manitoba.

The mosquito surveillance program in Sun Country Health Region began the first week in June using mosquito traps that have been set up in three communities in SCHR.

To decrease the risk of West Nile virus infection, Dr. Hudson is advising residents to take precautions to reduce exposure to West Nile virus throughout the rest of the summer. 

Dr Hudson recommends you follow the “FIVE Ds”. All people in the Region need to prevent infections by getting rid of mosquito-friendly places in their yards and take personal precautions to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes in the places where they live, work and play. Dr. Hudson says “People who work outside and families who are out camping and enjoying our parks and lakes need to take make sure to take precautions to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes, especially at dusk and dawn.” 

FIVE Ds:

  1. Wear a good insect repellant with DEET. Apply according to directions.
  2. DRAIN standing water. Mosquitoes require water to complete their life cycle. Eliminate or reduce all sources of standing water where mosquitoes can lay eggs like wading pools, wheelbarrows, containers, rain downspouts and gutters, pet dishes and birdbaths, etc. Reduce places in your yard where adult mosquitoes can thrive like tall grasses and weeds.
  3. Avoid going out during DUSK and DAWN. The mosquitoes that carry West Nile virus are most active at dawn and dusk and also in the early evening. They are especially active for two hours after sunset.
  4. DRESS appropriately. Wear long sleeves and long pants (wear light-weight clothing to minimize the potential for heat-induced illnesses). Mosquitoes may be more attracted to individuals wearing perfumes and colognes.
  5. Mosquito-proof your home. Make sure that DOORS and windows have tight fitting screens. Repair or replace screens that have tears or holes. 

For more information on West Nile Virus, go to the:

 Date: Jul-30-10

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