Second Jackson County resident dies this year from West Nile

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A second Jackson County resident has died this year from the West Nile virus, according to the Jackson County Health Department. 

Another death attributed to the virus was reported in September.

The neuroinvasive virus is commonly spread to people through the bite of an infected mosquito, according to a news release. 

Jackson County Health Department Health Director Bridgette Shaffer said that although the weather is turning cooler, mosquitoes carrying the West Nile virus can remain active until the first hard frost of the year. 

“It’s important for everyone to continue taking precautions like using insect repellent, wearing long sleeve shirts and pants, and staying indoors between dusk and dawn,” Shaffer said in the release. 

The most effective way to prevent West Nile infection is to prevent mosquito bites. 

Most people infected with the virus have no symptoms. Those experiencing more severe symptoms — including high fever, severe headaches, neck stiffness, disorientation, tremors, convulsions, vision loss, and numbness or paralysis — should seek medical attention immediately.  

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