Published: Thu, October 03, 2019
Medical | By Mark Scott

A 10th person has died from rare EEE infection

A 10th person has died from rare EEE infection

Sharon McMullen, director of University Health Services, advises that the campus community and fans in town for Saturday's football game between the Irish and Virginia should take precautions against Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE), a rare but serious mosquito-borne virus.

Aerial spraying to combat the mosquito-borne Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE) is set to occur in multiple locations across southwest MI, including in Berrien and Cass counties, according to the counties' health departments.

According to the health department, avoiding mosquito bites is the best way to protect oneself from EEE and other diseases, like West Nile. However, southern MI has recently been hit particularly hard with seven confirmed cases, three of which resulted in death. Of that number, three resulted in death, including one in Kalamazoo County.

According to health officials in both Rockland County and Long Island, local mosquitoes have tested positive for Eastern Equine Encephalitis. Unfortunately, multiple human and animal cases have been reported in MI this year.

Merus 3.0 is considered an organic pesticide that contains five percent pyrethrins. Most recently, spraying took place in Chester Township on September 16. "We proceed to emphasise the need for folks to supply protection to themselves from mosquito bites". "However, owners should cover small ornamental fishponds during the night of spraying", state health officials said. This is because the risk of EEE to humans in Clinton, Gratiot and Montcalm counties is now very low.

A map of the state's current EEE risk levels can be found here.

The MDHHS is also encouraging local officials in all counties affected by EEE to consider postponing, rescheduling or cancelling outdoor activities occurring at or after dusk, particularly activities that involve children. People can be infected with EEE from the bite of a mosquito carrying the viruses. Apply insect repellent to clothing to help prevent bites.

EEE, which triggers mind swelling, fever, and coma, kills roughly one third of the individuals who contract it, in keeping with the Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention.

Anyone who thinks they may be experiencing these symptoms should contact a medical provider.

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