Health officials report first 2018 West Nile related death in Harris County

EMBED </>More Videos

Harris County reports first West Nile death of the year

Health officials say a man has died after contracting the West Nile virus in Harris County.

The 45-year-old man from southwest Houston reportedly had an underlying chronic health condition.

In a press release, officials said that this is the first West Nile-associated death in Harris County and the state of Texas for 2018.

"We are devastated to report the first West Nile virus-associated death, and our hearts go out to the family. Mosquitoes can spread a variety of diseases and those who are most vulnerable; children, aging and immunosuppressed individuals, are at a higher risk of dying of mosquito-borne diseases," stated Umair A. Shah, MD, MPH, executive director of HCPH. "We conduct mosquito surveillance year-round and actively work on protecting our residents from diseases transmitted by mosquitoes, but we simply cannot do it alone. Continuously, we ask our residents to partner with us by reducing mosquito-breeding sites and protect themselves from getting bitten by mosquitoes."

As of Thursday, the county said 303 mosquito samples have tested positive for the virus.

The areas where those samples have been detected have been sprayed to reduce the risk of the disease, according to health officials.

This year, a total of six human cases have been confirmed in Harris County and the City of Houston.

SEE MORE: How to keep mosquitoes away after a flood
EMBED More News Videos

Standing water provides an ideal location for pesky mosquitoes to lay eggs, and they can spread diseases like malaria, yellow fever, West Nile virus and Zika.

Related Topics:
healthwest nile virusmosquitoHouston
(Copyright ©2018 KTRK-TV. All Rights Reserved.)