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West Nile Virus found in Belmont horse

CONCORD — A horse in Belmont has tested positive for West Nile Virus (WNV), the N.H. Department of Health & Human Services announced late Wednesday. This finding necessitates, the agency said, increasing the risk level in Belmont from "Remote" to "High."

Towns surrounding Belmont, including Northfield, Tilton, Sanbornton, Laconia, Gilford, Gilmanton and Canterbury will be raised to "Moderate Risk."

"Though parts of the state saw frost last night, we are not through with the mosquito season yet," said Dr. José Montero, Public Health Director at DHHS. "There are still mosquitoes around and we are urging residents to continue to take precautions against mosquito bites including using a repellent."

So far this season New Hampshire's Public Health Lab has tested 5,174 batches of mosquitoes. Of those, 14 have tested positive for WNV and 20 tested positive for Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE). One person was also diagnosed with WNV, and three other horses were found positive for EEE earlier in the season.

Symptoms of WNV disease often appear 4 to 10 days after being bitten. If you or someone you know is experiencing flu-like symptoms, including fever and headache, contact your local medical provider.

Questions about EEE and WNV can be answered by calling the toll free EEE/West Nile Virus information line at 1-866-273-6453. You can also find extensive information about both diseases online at www.dhhs.nh.gov/dphs/cdcs/arboviral/index.htm.

 
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