First case of West Nile Virus confirmed in Tulsa

by: Angela Hong Updated:

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TULSA, Okla. —

The first human case of West Nile Virus this year has been reported in Tulsa County.
 
The Tulsa Health Department announced Thursday that this is the second human case in the state so far this season.   
 
The department said the victim is a Tulsa County resident over the age of 50 and that this case should serve as a warning to others.
 
Kevin Hilton of We Do Windows and Doors said he spends most of his days outdoors. That makes him a feast for mosquitoes.
 
“Several weeks ago when I got started on a house I go eaten up pretty good,” Hilton said.
 
The area of north Tulsa he is working in tested positive for mosquitos carrying the virus.
 
“I’ve seen it on TV and I’ve seen what it does to people. I sure don’t need to get sick,” Hilton said.
 
“It can be a pretty debilitating disease. Most people recover but for some it can take a long time,” said Luisa Krug with the Tulsa Health Department.
 
Department officials said crews have sprayed in the area where the victim lives and worked with the victim to try to determine where he might have come in contact with the mosquito.
 
Five out of the 50 testing sites in Tulsa County have tested positive for the virus.
 
“We wear long-sleeved shirts and wrap out necks with handkerchiefs and stuff,” Hilton said.
 
Department officials said the peak of West Nile season lasts until October.

Mosquito prevention tips include using insect repellent containing DEET when going outdoors, using window and door screens to keep them out of your home and keep items such as buckets, pool covers, or flower pots from holding standing water.

To place a complaint about mosquitoes in your area, please call 918-595-4219 or submit an online environmental complaint form on the Tulsa Health Department website at www.tulsa-health.org