West Nile virus hits Brooklyn

September 9, 2014 Heather Chin
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Two Brooklynites were among the five people in New York to become ill from the West Nile virus – the first cases this year. All five have since returned home from treatment or the hospital, but the city Health Department (DOH) is due to deploy another round of pesticide spraying on Wednesday, September 10 between 8 p.m. and 6 a.m. the following morning.

Affected areas include Brooklyn’s Bath Beach, Bensonhurst, Dyker Heights and Fort Hamilton neighborhoods, within zip codes 11214 and 11228.

Affected boundaries are bordered by 77th Street to the North; Brooklyn Queens Expressway to the West; Belt Parkway, 16th Ave and Bath Ave to the South; and 20th Ave to the East.

According to the DOH, human cases typically occur between July and October and overall, 307 New Yorkers have been diagnosed with West Nile-related illness since 1999.

DOH Commissioner Dr. Mary Bassett noted that “the most effective way to reduce mosquitoes in an area is to eliminate standing water, which is where they breed and lay their eggs, and to wear mosquito repellent when you are outdoors. New Yorkers age 60 and older should be especially careful as they are more likely to develop serious illness if infected.”

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