Scientists and health officials continue to work on understanding the West Nile Virus (WNV) outbreak at Yosemite National Park this summer. Three park visitors died from the outbreak, and six others were infected. Health officials have noted that none of the 300 year-round employees working at the park were infected and will soon draw their blood to see if they can learn why some people get sick and others don’t.
Researchers will gain an understanding of how many of the employees were exposed to the virus since WNV antibodies are detectible in the bloodstream. Some employees may never have developed the virus’ flulike symptoms or they may have developed mild cases that were misdiagnosed or not severe enough that they did not seek medical attention.
The employees will also complete an extensive questionnaire that will give park officials insight into whether prevention training influenced employee behaviors to reduce the spread of the disease.
Researchers know little about West Nile Virus. They do know that West Nile Virus is transmitted by airborne particles of mouse urine and feces. The concentrated outbreak and potential exposure to the disease is a unique situation that may help researchers make a breakthrough in understanding and preventing it. Many of the employees who volunteered for the study are the scientists, researchers and rangers interested in advancing our knowledge of WNV.
Anytime the presence of mice is evident, it is important to address the issue to prevent the possibility of exposure to the disease. To clean mouse dropping, spray them with a mixture of bleach and water, then wipe them up with paper towels or a mop. Do not to sweep or vacuum up mouse droppings.
Hantavirus is an illness with flu-like symptoms that also affects the lungs. It has an incubation period of up to six weeks. The deer mice in Yosemite
For the full story on the ongoing research on Yosemite’s outbreak, please see Federal News Radio. For the latest information about West Nile Virus, please visit the CDC Website. Pest Defense Solutions can always help you with your pest control needs, including mice and other rodents. For more about Pest Defense Solutions’ services, please click here or fill out our contact request form.
Tags: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Mice, Pest Control, Rodents, West Nile Virus