EEE Found In New Bedford Mosquitoes
The Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH) today announced that the Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE) virus has been found in mosquitoes from New Bedford. The virus was found in four mosquito samples collected on September 16.
This is the fifth time that EEE has been found in Massachusetts this year; however this is the first time that it has been found in mosquitoes that bite people. EEE is spread to people through the bite of an infected mosquito. Eastern Equine Encephalitis is a very serious disease. Currently there is no treatment for EEE and it can be fatal.
“We urge residents to continue using insect repellent because mosquitoes are still active. We want to avoid any human cases of EEE this year,” said State Epidemiologist Dr. Al DeMaria.
While there weren’t any human cases of EEE during 2007, there were 13 cases with 6 deaths during the last outbreak cycle during 2004 through 2006.
DPH continues to identify West Nile Virus (WNV) positive samples. WVN has been found in 117 mosquitoes samples from 54 cities and towns and 57 birds in 49 cities and towns.