Oklahoma health officials confirm West Nile related death

By: Sara Humphrey Email
By: Sara Humphrey Email

ARDMORE, OK - The first person in Oklahoma has died of the West Nile Virus since 2009 and several cases have been reported in our area.

Carter County only falls behind Tulsa and Oklahoma counties when it comes to the most confirmed cases of West Nile Virus in the state.

"It's really spread through out Carter County," Emergency Response Coordinator Megan Monteith said. "There is no specific area that it's targeting."

So far there have been nine confirmed cases in Carter County.

Tuesday OSDH announced a person in Oklahoma County died from West Nile.

It is the first West Nile related fatality in Oklahoma since 2009.

"The vast majority do fine and get well," Mercy Hospital's Chief of Hospital Medicine Kevin Reed said. "They go back to business, some don't even know they have it but a small proportion of the get the brain infection which is called encephalitis."

Physicians at Mercy Hospital Ardmore couldn't release how many people they've treated for West Nile over the past couple weeks, but did say they've seen a few.

The Carter County Health Department said the best protection is prevention.

They are urging everyone to wear insect repellent containing DEET and dump out any standing water so mosquito's don't have a place to breed.

The OSDH said that West Nile tends to peak in September and early October so they are expecting to see more cases.


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