Spread of EEE virus may increase during summer

Hampden County

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – As we continue through the summer season, the chance for the Eastern Equine Encephalitis virus to spread will likely increase.

EEE found in second mosquito sample from Franklin County, risk level raised to moderate

EEE is a rare but serious disease that can affect people of all ages. It’s generally spread to humans through the bite of an infected mosquito.

There were 12 human cases of EEE in Massachusetts in 2019, with six deaths. There were also nine cases in domestic animals. The best way to protect yourself from EEE is to avoid mosquito bites.

Timeline: Human cases of EEE virus in Massachusetts, 2019

You can do this by applying insect repellent with DEET whenever you go outside. You should also be aware of peak mosquito hours. The hours from dusk to dawn are peak biting times for many mosquitoes. Consider rescheduling outdoor activities that occur during evening or early morning in areas of high risk.

Although it tends to be hot this time of year, if you’re going to be outside for a long period of time, try to keep your arms and legs covered.

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