Jackson County health officials urge residents to take precautions against mosquito-borne illnesses –

JACKSON COUNTY, MI — After last year’s outbreak of deadly mosquito-borne illness Eastern equine encephalitis, or EEE, Jackson County officials are reminding residents to be cautious as they head outside this summer and fall.

The Jackson County Department issued a warning Friday, July 3, ahead of what is usually one of Michigan’s busiest weekends for gatherings and outdoor activities, even as the threat of the COVID-19 pandemic remains.

The department is advising Jackson County residents take necessary precautions: using bug spray, wearing long sleeve shirts and pants, tightly covering water storage containers such as buckets, cisterns or rain barrels and making sure to have screens repaired in their homes.

“We do not have any disease reports as of yet,” said Don Hayduk, director of the department’s environmental health division.

Hayduk reiterated that there is no cause for concern, and said no cases have come up recently, but that the department wants Jackson County residents to be careful.

3 more Jackson County horses test positive for mosquito-borne EEE

Hayduk said that, with mosquito season ramping up, the department wants residents to be informed of the risks, and of precautions they can take against illnesses like EEE, St. Louis encephalitis (SLE), West Nile virus (WNV) and other California encephalitis (CE) viruses.

The county health department is once again conducting surveillance for mosquito-borne diseases, , department officials said in a release. This year’s efforts to track and manage the spread of the various mosquito-borne illnesses comes after the 2019 season, when the state experienced an outbreak of Eastern equine encephalitis.

It was the worst outbreak at least since the 1980s, and resulted in insecticide being deployed over large areas throughout the state, including in Jackson County.

The state started spraying late last September 2019 and covered 128,000 acres, beginning in Southwest Michigan. More zones were sprayed later in the fall.

Michigan teen fighting deadly EEE virus ‘beating the odds’

By November, six Michigan residents had died from the rare EEE virus, which can be transmitted through mosquito bites. officials called the 2019 outbreak of EEE the worst in the states history.

There were no human cases in Jackson County, Hayduk said.

More on Triple EEE, other illnesses:

Sixth Michigan resident dies from rare mosquito-borne illness

Deadly mosquito-borne virus confirmed in Jackson County deer

Spraying for EEE mosquito virus may start tonight in Jackson County

Michigan advises against outdoor activity due to deadly mosquito-borne virus

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