Health and Fitness

First Central Illinois West Nile Virus Positive Results For 2012

SPRINGFIELD–(ENEWSPF)–June 19, 2012.  The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) is reporting the first West Nile virus positive bird detected in central Illinois for 2012. Champaign Urbana Public Health District staff collected a crow on June 12, which tested positive for West Nile virus. A bird collected in Cook County on May 16, and mosquito batches collected on May 17 and May 18 in DuPage and Cook counties, were the first West Nile virus positive specimens this year.

“With hot weather forecasted for this week, we anticipate increased West Nile virus activity across the state. Typically when temperatures increases, so do mosquito activity and the risk of West Nile disease,” said Illinois Department of Public Health Director Dr. LaMar Hasbrouck. “It is important to protect yourself by following the three R’s – reduce your exposure to mosquitoes, repel them by wearing insect repellent, and report areas where mosquitoes typically breed.”

This year, West Nile virus positive birds and/or mosquitoes have been reported in 13 counties – Champaign, Cook, DeKalb, DuPage, Gallatin, Jackson, Kendall, LaSalle, Madison, Peoria, St. Clair, Stephenson and Will counties (website updates every Wednesday afternoon). No human cases of West Nile virus have been reported so far this year.

The first West Nile virus positive results in 2011 were collected on June 8 and included two birds from LaSalle County. Last year 19 counties in Illinois reported a West Nile virus positive mosquito batch, bird and/or human case. A total of 34 Illinois residents contracted West Nile virus disease, and three died.

Surveillance for West Nile virus in Illinois includes laboratory tests on mosquito batches, dead crows, blue jays, robins and other perching birds, as well as testing sick horses and humans with West Nile-like disease symptoms. People who observe a sick or dying crow, blue jay, robin or other perching bird should contact their local health department, which will determine if the bird will be picked up for testing.

Additional information about West Nile virus can be found on the Illinois Department of Public Health’s Web site at