Health Officials Announce Two More Human Cases of West Nile Virus in Massachusetts

BOSTON — The Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH) announced two additional human cases of West Nile virus (WNV) in the state this year. WNV infection was identified in a woman in her 70s who was exposed in Essex County and a man in his 60s exposed in Middlesex County. This brings the total number of human cases of WNV to six this year; there has been one animal case.

As overnight temperatures get cooler, mosquito activity right around dusk and dawn may be more intense.

“There are large numbers of mosquitoes carrying West Nile virus right now in parts of Massachusetts due to a nearly perfect combination of periodic rain and warm temperatures,” said acting Public Health Commissioner Margret Cooke. “All six of our human cases have been in people over the age of 50. It is especially critical that people at risk for severe disease, such as those over 50 and anyone with immune compromise, remember to take steps to prevent mosquito bites anytime they are outdoors.”