Mississippi’s West Nile virus total hits 26 so far this year

Published 3:18 pm Monday, August 27, 2018

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — The Mississippi State Department of Health confirms three more cases of West Nile virus, bringing the year’s total to 26.

The new cases are in Hinds, Harrison and Walthall counties.

Mississippi has among the highest numbers of serious West Nile infections nationwide.

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Hinds County has reported 10 total cases. Adams, Calhoun and Forrest counties have two each.

Counties with a single case each are Copiah, Itawamba, Jones, Madison, Marion, Oktibbeha, Pearl River, Walthall and Washington.

Mississippi reported 63 West Nile cases and two deaths in 2017.

Health officials urge people to reduce risk by using insect repellent, wearing long, light-colored clothes and eliminating standing water.

Most infected people don’t get symptoms. About three in 10 develop flu-like illness, and fewer than 1 percent develop dangerous brain or nervous system infections.