Department of Health reports first human case of West Nile Virus this year in Rhode Island

This is a file image of a mosquito. (WLNE)

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WLNE) — The Rhode Island Department of Health has a confirmed the first human case of West Nile Virus in the state in 2022.

The Department of Health said the person is a resident in their 70s that lives in Providence County.

The person is currently hospitalized after first experiencing symptom about three weeks ago.

Symptoms for West Nile Virus include fever, headache, body aches, nausea, vomiting and sometimes swollen lymph glands or a skin rash.

“The best way to prevent West Nile Virus and other mosquito-borne diseases is to prevent mosquitoes from breeding and to avoid mosquito bites,” said interim director of health, Utpala Bandy. “Mosquitoes breed in water, so you should get rid of anything around your house and yard that collects water, such as tires, planters, and old trash cans or recycling bins.”

Surrounding states have also reported cases of the virus, including one in Connecticut and four in Massachusetts.

“You should use repellent, and also wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants when you are outside, especially at sunrise and sunset. A few simple precautions can help you stay healthy and safe when you are outdoors spending quality time with family and friends,” said Bandy.

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