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Suffolk: Third mosquito sample tests positive for West Nile virus

A file photo shows a mosquito, a carrier

A file photo shows a mosquito, a carrier for the potentially lethal West Nile virus. Credit: Getty Images

Suffolk County reported one more mosquito sample testing positive for West Nile virus, bringing to three the total so far this year, health officials said Friday.

The most recent sample was collected June 30 in West Babylon.

Nassau County reports one positive sample so far, collected July 3 in Kings Point, a spokeswoman said Friday.

Some mosquito bites can transmit West Nile to humans, with mosquitoes picking up the virus by feeding on infected birds.

"The confirmation of West Nile virus in mosquito samples or birds indicates the presence of West Nile virus in the area," said Dr. James L. Tomarken, Suffolk County health services commissioner.

"While there is no cause for alarm, we urge residents to cooperate with us in our efforts to reduce the exposure to the virus, which can be debilitating to humans."

In some cases, the virus causes serious neurological illnesses that can lead to health conditions or death.

Last year, Nassau had four reported human cases of West Nile and no deaths, with Suffolk reporting one case and no deaths.

In the United States 2,205 cases of human infection were reported last year, resulting in 97 deaths, according to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Residents are advised to eliminate stagnant water where mosquitoes breed in and around their homes; to minimize outdoor activities and cover their skin in the evening and night when mosquitoes are most active; and to use mosquito repellent outdoors.

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