During June’s meeting of the West Hills Neighborhood Council, a nurse from the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health reported on the Zika virus’ potential effects on pregnant women and newborns in Los Angeles. She also shared ways residents can protect themselves from the Zika and West Nile viruses, both of which can be spread by the Aedes mosquito.
Community Liaison Nurse Shameeka Correia-Fill said no cases of mosquito-borne transmission of the Zika virus have been reported in the region, though West Nile virus has been in the area for several years. She advised women who are pregnant or plan to be pregnant to avoid traveling to regions of the world where the Zika virus is prevalent.
Meanwhile, the Greater Los Angeles County Vector Control District (GLACVCD) cautions all residents to be on alert to prevent the spread of the West Nile virus (WNV) this summer.
The agency has confirmed discovery of WNV-positive mosquitoes in Granada Hills and West Hills, as well as WNV-positive crows in Santa Clarita and Valencia.
“The district’s Zika (Aedes) control teams are aggressively surveying neighborhoods and following up on reports of day-biting mosquitoes,” a GLACVCD spokesperson said.
“As these mosquitoes do not travel far from their water source, residents are encouraged to work with the district and their neighbors to find and remove problem breeding sites in the neighborhood.”
The spokesperson urged residents to eliminate all standing water sources and report inoperable swimming pools and ponds to the district promptly.
If residents still experience mosquito problems after dumping and draining all standing water, they can get help from the Greater Los Angeles County Vector Control District at (562) 944-9656 or www.ReportMosquitoes.org.