(PLACERVILLE, CA) – The California Legislature has declared April 15 through April 21, 2018 as Mosquito
Awareness Week to raise awareness and educate Californians about the threat mosquitoes pose to our
communities. El Dorado County health officials are reminding residents to take steps to protect themselves
from mosquitoes as warmer weather approaches, both at home and when traveling out of the Country, and to be
aware of the serious risks mosquitoes present to their health including West Nile, Saint Louis encephalitis, and
potentially dengue, chikungunya, and Zika viruses.
West Nile Virus (WNV) is primarily a disease of birds that can be transmitted to people and animals by
mosquitoes. WNV is a mosquito-borne disease that can result in debilitating cases of meningitis and
encephalitis and death to humans, horses, avian species and other wildlife. In 2017, there were 536 confirmed
human cases of WNV in 44 counties throughout California with no cases in El Dorado County. Statewide there
were 43 human deaths.
"Pregnant women should be aware about the risks of traveling to Mexico and other countries where the Zika
virus can be transmitted through mosquito bite, which can result in harm to the growing fetus,” said County
Health Officer, Dr. Nancy Williams. “Babies born to mothers infected with Zika virus can be born
with microcephaly or other severe fetal brain defects. The safest thing for pregnant women or women who
could become pregnant is to postpone travel to countries where Zika virus is present until after the baby is
born." For more information about Zika virus and pregnant women, Williams points people
El Dorado County Vector Control technicians respond to resident complaints and provide surveillance and
control of mosquito sources in designated areas of El Dorado County. Residents and visitors can reduce their
risk of mosquito-borne diseases by taking the following precautions:
To report a dead bird, contact the West Nile Virus Hotline at 1-877-WNV-BIRD (1-877-968-2473) or visit their
website www.westnile.ca.gov. To report a complaint about mosquito activity contact El Dorado County
Vector Control at (530) 573-3197 in the Tahoe Basin, or (530) 621-5300 on the West Slope.
Providing safe, healthy and vibrant communities; respecting our natural resources and historical heritage.