Contact Information 

Meadville District Office
900-920 Water Street
Downtown Mall
Meadville, PA  16335
Phone (814) 336-1136
Hours 8 a.m.- 4:00 p.m. (M-F)

Fairview Office (Mondays Only)
Fairview Township Building
7471 McCray Rd., Fairview, PA
Hours 9 a.m. - 4 p.m. (Monday)
1-800-770-2377

Cranesville Office (Thursdays Only)
Cranesville Borough Office
10195 John Williams Ave.
Cranesville, PA 16410
Phone: 1-800-770-2377
Hours 9 a.m. - 3 p.m. (Thursday)

Capitol Office
Hon. Brad Roae
151 East Wing
Harrisburg PA 17120-2006
Phone: (717) 787-2353
Fax: 717-782-2902

E-mail:
  broae@pahousegop.com

Q & A - First West Nile Virus Cases of 2013 Reported in PA
8/22/2013

QUESTION:  I heard that cases of West Nile virus have been reported in Pennsylvania.  Can you tell me where they were reported and some steps I can take to protect my family?

ANSWER:  The Pennsylvania Department of Health has reported the first probable cases of West Nile virus (WNV) this year in Montgomery and York counties.

The good news is – according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) – most people, or approximately 70 percent to 80 percent of those infected with WNV, do not develop symptoms.

Approximately one out of every five people who are infected with the disease will develop a fever with other symptoms.  They may develop body aches, joint pains, a rash, a headache, diarrhea or vomiting.  The CDC advises that most people who develop this form of WNV disease recover completely.  However, they may feel fatigue and weakness for weeks or months.

Unfortunately, a very limited number of people – less than 1 percent of people who contract WNV – may develop a serious neurologic illness such as encephalitis or meningitis (inflammation of the brain or surrounding tissues).

The serious neurologic illness may lead to disorientation, seizures, tremors, paralysis or a coma.  People who already have certain medical conditions – such as cancer, diabetes, kidney disease and hypertension – are at a greater risk of developing the serious neurologic illness by contracting WNV.

Some of the neurologic effects of the serious disease may be permanent and, in extreme cases, WNV may even lead to death.

Because of the potential harm this disease may cause, the departments of Health and Environmental Protection are urging residents to minimize their exposure to mosquitoes.

The mosquitoes that transmit the virus breed in areas with standing and stagnant water.  These areas can include catch basins, clogged gutters, discarded tires, poorly maintained swimming pools, flower pots and other types of plastic containers.

You can take simple steps to eliminate standing water around the home.  For example, you can remove tin cans, plastic containers, ceramic pots, discarded tires or any object that could collect standing water.  You also can have roof gutters cleaned every year, particularly if the leaves from nearby trees have a tendency to clog the drains.  Another good suggestion is to turn over plastic wading pools and wheelbarrows when not in use.  Aerating ornamental pools or stocking them with fish is another good way to prevent the spread of WNV.  Finally, it is a good idea to consider cleaning and chlorinating swimming pools and removing standing water from pool covers.

The Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) conducts regular surveillance and control to manage mosquito populations around the state.  So far, DEP has detected WNV-infected mosquitoes in 36 counties.

For more information on WNV and how to prevent its spread, visit my website at www.RepRoae.com and click on “West Nile Virus Control.”
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