NEW CITY – Rockland County officials Tuesday confirmed the season’s first human case of West Nile virus in a county resident.
The patient is over 50 and tested positive for the illness based on clinical symptoms and preliminary laboratory findings. He was hospitalized on September 6 with fever and weakness in his lower extremities and remains hospitalized.
County officials said this is the first known human case of neuro-invasive West Nile virus in Rockland County.
“This human case of West Nile virus reinforces the urgency of the need for people to protect themselves against mosquito bites and to continue to get rid of standing water around their properties where mosquitoes breed,” said county Health Commissioner Dr. Patricia Schnabel Ruppert.
A bite from an infected mosquito can spread West Nile virus, an infection that can cause serious illness, and in some cases, death. Although a person’s chances of getting sick are small, those 50 and older are at higher risk for serious illness.