- Associated Press - Friday, August 15, 2014

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - The Oklahoma State Department of Health has only confirmed one human case of West Nile virus so far this year, a huge drop from two years ago.

The state recorded the highest number of cases of the mosquito-borne disease in 2012, with 176 cases and 15 deaths, The Oklahoman reported (https://bit.ly/1oOg1BN ). Last year, there were 84 confirmed cases, including eight people who died.

State epidemiologist Kristy Bradley said this year’s West Nile season shows how cyclical the virus can be.

“We have seen this in previous years that follow a more severe outbreak of West Nile virus where, in the year or two following, it’s deeply declined with very low incidence for a couple of years before it starts to rise again,” Bradley said.

Oklahoma’s only case of West Nile this year was confirmed in early July in a Major County resident who was hospitalized for the virus. There is no vaccine for humans who contract the West Nile virus.

The West Nile season usually runs from July to October. At this time two years ago, 55 cases of West Nile disease were confirmed and one person had died.

Bradley said while Oklahoma hasn’t seen a high number of cases this year, residents should still take preventive measures against the bug bites.

“We still caution Oklahomans to take their usual mosquito bite precautions and use repellent, especially if they’re outside in the evening or early morning hours,” Bradley said.


Information from: The Oklahoman, https://www.newsok.com



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