June 9, 2006

Larviciding program begins

 
NEWMARKET – York Region Health Services has begun the West Nile Virus larviciding program. Members of the media are invited to learn more about the procedure first-hand at a media briefing/photo opportunity event. 
 
What:  Application of larvicide into catch basins and an opportunity to ask questions
 
When:  Monday, June 12, 2006
  11:00 a.m.
  
Where: Corner of Raglan Street and Queen Street, Newmarket
  (Queen Street runs west off of Bayview Avenue, immediately south of Davis Drive)
Who: 
• York Region Health Services West Nile Virus Program staff
• Pestalto Environmental Products Inc. working crew (Ministry of the Environment licensed applicator)
 
Background:
• Larviciding is a low risk and effective measure for the control of West Nile Virus
• Methoprene is the larvicide that will be used. The slow-release pellet formulation interferes with the mosquito life cycle, preventing the mosquito larva from reaching maturity. It is not sprayed. The products have been approved by both the provincial and federal governments and are considered low risk for humans, pets and the environment when applied in accordance with label instructions
• Larvicide will be placed into catch basins by Ministry of the Environment licensed applicator Pestalto Environmental Products Inc. Crews will use bicycles in residential areas and vehicles on busier roads
• There were 5 human cases, 22 birds and 14 mosquito pools (or batches) testing positive for the virus in York Region in 2005. The Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care attributed 8 deaths in the province last year to West Nile Virus illness.
 
For more information on West Nile Virus or other health-related concern, contact York Region Health Services Health Connection at 1-800-361-5653 or visit www.york.ca
 
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Attachment: See the attached Fact Sheet on the York Region 2006 West Nile Virus Control Plan and simple, common sense precautions that should be taken.
 
Media Contact: Jennifer Mitchell-Emmerson, York Region Health Services
 Phone:  (905) 830-4444 ext. 4016 or after-hours pager (905) 830-3302
 Email: jennifer.mitchellemmerson@york.ca
 
 
 
Fact Sheet
York Region’s 2006 West Nile Virus (WNV) Control Plan
 
NEWMARKET – The York Region West Nile Virus (WNV) control plan for 2006 includes:
 
• Mosquito, bird and human surveillance
• WNV control activities, including a larviciding strategy:
- The first larvicide application will be in June and the subsequent applications will be in July, August and September. These applications will target all catch basins along regional and municipal roads and in catch basins, as required, on private property
- Methoprene is the larvicide that will be used. It comes in a slow-release pellet-like formulation and is administered in catch basins when the mosquito is in the larval stage of development. It interferes with the mosquito life cycle, preventing the mosquito larva from reaching maturity. It is not sprayed. It has been approved by both the provincial and federal governments and is considered low risk for humans, pets and the environment when it is applied according to label directions
• The WNV control plan also includes public education regarding common sense and effective measures to prevent exposure to WNV
 
Prevention and protection are the best ways to protect yourself and your family from WNV. There are simple and common sense precautions that should be taken:
 
• Minimize outdoor activities where and when mosquitoes are most active such as dusk, night and dawn
• Wear protective clothing such as long sleeved shirts, full-length trousers, socks, light coloured clothing and tuck pant legs into socks when possible
• Consider using an insect repellent, as directed
• Make sure screens on your home are tight-fitting and in good repair
• Mosquitoes breed in still water. Eliminate stagnant water around your property which may gather in pool covers, flower pots, children’s pools, old tires and birdbaths
 
For more information on West Nile Virus or any health-related concern, contact York Region Health Services Health Connection at 1-800-361-5653 or visit www.york.ca
 
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Media Contact: Jennifer Mitchell-Emmerson, York Region Health Services
 Phone:  (905) 830-4444 ext. 4016 or after-hours pager (905) 830-3302
 Email: jennifer.mitchellemmerson@york.ca


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