Fifth WNV death sets state record

Arkansas’ fifth West Nile Virus related death set a record for the highest number of fatalities resulting from the disease in a year, the Arkansas Department of Health told Arkansas News on Wednesday.

The previous record was set in 2005 and 2006 when four deaths were recorded each year resulting from the virus.

Websites for the DOH and the Centers for Disease Control differ on the number of cases, however, between 39 and 43 West Nile Virus cases have been confirmed this year.

Officials with the DOH can’t release information on where the deaths occurred per privacy laws. As it stands, three cases have been confirmed in Union County and three in Columbia County. Pulaski County has the highest number of cases reported and confirmed at 10.

Each year health professionals preach the three Ds to avoid the mosquito bites that set the virus in motion: Drain standing water, use insect repellant with deet and wear protective clothing at dusk and dawn.

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