JOLIET – The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) announced Friday a Will County resident has become the confirmed the first human West Nile virus-related death in Illinois this year.
According to reports, the resident first became ill with the virus in late August.
“Although we are already into fall, we are expecting a warm weekend, and West Nile virus remains a risk until the first hard frost,” said IDPH Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike. “It’s important for everyone to continue taking precautions such as using insect repellent, wearing long sleeve shirts and pants, and staying indoors between dusk and dawn.”
In 2021, 40 cases of West Nile have been reported in Illinois, down from 42 reported throughout all last year. People ages 50 and over are exceptionally considered at higher risk for the illness.
IDPH recommends wearing long sleeves and pants, using insect spray, and reporting any standing water in your community to curb the spread of any potential outbreaks.