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7 cases of Eastern Equine Encephalitis confirmed by Michigan health officials

CASS COUNTY, Mich. – The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services confirmed 7 cases of Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE) in Cass and Van Buren Counties.

There are also 9 confirmed cases of animals contracting EEE in St. Joseph (MI), Cass and Van Buren Counties.

Additionally, the Elkhart County Health Department also issued a warning after 4 horses in Elkhart County tested positive for EEE.

EEE is a deadly virus carried by certain types of mosquitoes, and it can lead to severe disease and infection if contracted.

There is a vaccination for horses with EEE, but not for human beings.

Although St. Joseph County has not issued a warning regarding EEE, Penn Harris Madison School Corporation recommends the following:

  • When used as directed, EPA-registered insect repellents are proven safe and effective. Use Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-registered insect repellents with one of these active ingredients:
    • DEET, Picaridin, IR3535, Oil of lemon eucalyptus (OLE) or para menthane-diol (PMD), 2-undecanone. Find the insect repellent that’s right for you by using EPA’s search tool.
  • Apply long lasting insect repellent to your children or yourself before leaving for school/work. Please research and use the product that has the longest effective range; this will provide extra protection for our elementary age children and staff during recess times.
    • Middle and High School students who have outside, after-school activities are allowed to have non-aerosol insect repellent in the form of lotion or wipes in their backpacks and are encouraged to apply before going outdoors. P-H-M prefers these students only bring non-aerosol products to school in order to prevent getting the products in their eyes.
  • Wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants. Insect repellent can also be applied to the clothing for a longer lasting effect and helps prevent bites. The weather for the week of Sept. 23 is forecasted to be cooler and in the 70s.
  • If you and your family are attending outdoor, after-school activities, please apply insect repellent to your body and to your long-sleeved shirts and pants clothing.

For the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services recommendations, click here.

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