The Florida Department of Health in Polk County (DOH- Polk) advises residents of an increase in mosquito-borne disease activity in areas of Polk County.

Image/aloiswohlfahrt
Image/aloiswohlfahrt

Two horses and one sentinel chicken have tested positive for Eastern Equine Encephalitis virus within the past two weeks. The risk of transmission to humans has increased.

Polk County Mosquito Control and DOH-Polk continues surveillance and prevention efforts. DOH- Polk reminds residents and visitors to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes and to take basic precautions to help limit exposure.

Residence should remember to “Drain and Cover” in order to reduce one’s risk of mosquito bites. DRAIN standing water to stop mosquitoes from multiplying.

  • Drain water from garbage cans, house gutters, buckets, pool covers, coolers, toys, flower pots or any other containers where sprinkler or rain water has collected.
  • Discard old tires, drums, bottles, cans, pots and pans, broken appliances and other items that aren’t being used.
  • Empty and clean birdbaths and pet’s water bowls at least once or twice a week.
  • Protect boats and vehicles from rain with tarps that don’t accumulate water.
  • Maintain swimming pools in good condition and appropriately chlorinated. Empty plastic swimming pools when not in use. COVER skin with clothing or repellent.
  • Clothing – Wear shoes, socks, and long pants and long-sleeves. This type of protection may be necessary for people who must work in areas where mosquitoes are present.
  • Repellent – Apply mosquito repellent to bare skin and clothing.
  • Always use repellents according to the label. Repellents with DEET, picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus, para-menthane-diol, and IR3535 are effective.
  • Use mosquito netting to protect children younger than 2 months old.