West Nile still a threat
Marion County has been identified as a high risk area for West Nile virus despite no current instances.
Kansas Department of Health and Environment issued a high-risk warning for north central, south central, and southwest Kansas. Other areas are at moderate risk for WNV infections.
Roger Schroeder, director of public relations at St. Luke Hospital, said there have been no reported cases.
Since there are no vaccines or medications to treat WNV, he advised residents to be diligent in self-protection.
Veterinarian Brendan Kraus of Marion’s Spur Ridge Veterinary Clinic said horses are one of the only other animals to be affected by the virus. “We haven’t had any cases this year,” he said.
“We really haven’t had many incidents since 2002. A couple every once in a while but nothing of consequence,” he said.
He credits equine vaccinations for most of the decrease in cases. “Horses also develop a natural resistance after a while,” he said.