Clark County health department receives almost $22K for mosquito trapping, surveillance

The Clark County Combined Health District received a $21,872 grant from the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency for mosquito control and monitoring.

The EPA awarded a total of $1,060,682 in grants to 58 health departments and municipalities in 47 counties. The funds are part of the Mosquito Control Grant Program, which is a joint effort between the Ohio EPA and the Ohio Department of Health.

This program aims to support “entities in implementing mosquito control measures” to reduce the risk of outbreaks of mosquito-borne diseases like Zika, West Nile Virus, La Crosse Encephalitis and Eastern Equine Encephalitis, according to a CCCHD release.

“We are grateful for this grant, which will significantly bolster our mosquito control efforts,” said Zibby DeWitt, director of Environmental Health for CCCHD. “With these funds, we can better protect our community from mosquito-borne viruses and improve overall public health.”

The Clark County grant will be used to hire a summer intern and to purchase necessary trapping resources. The health department will work to mitigate the spread of mosquito-borne viruses, safeguard public health and reduce the environmental threats posed by scrap tires and tire dumps, which serve as common mosquito breeding grounds.

Last summer, mosquito samples tested positive for West Nile Virus in the county, a not-uncommon finding.

West Nile virus in humans can cause severe fever, encephalitis or meningitis, according to the health department. It is mainly spread by the northern house mosquito, which becomes infected when it feeds on infected birds. The mosquitos then spread the virus when biting humans and other animals.

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