First West Nile virus case reported in North Dakota
BISMARCK The North Dakota Department of Health announced Aug. 7 the state's first human case of West Nile virus for 2012, according to West Nile virus program manager Michelle Feist in a news release.
The patient is a male in his 50s who resides in Dickey County. This first case developed the more serious form of West Nile virus and required hospitalization for his illness.
"This case is a reminder of the seriousness of West Nile virus, especially for people older than 50 and those with weakened immune systems," said Feist. "Although the risk of serious illness to most people is low, everyone is at risk of developing West Nile virus infection after being bitten by an infected mosquito."
In addition, West Nile activity has been detected in six people identified through blood donor screening and three horses. People identified through blood donor screening are not counted as West Nile virus cases because they do not have symptoms. Fortunately, 80 percent of people bitten by an infected mosquito do not get sick. However, the detection of West Nile virus in blood donors, horses and other animals is an indication that West Nile virus transmission is occurring in this state.
In 2011, four human cases of West Nile virus were reported to the Department of Health. In addition, West Nile infection was identified in one horse and six dogs.
The common symptoms of West Nile virus include fever, headache, body aches and rash. People with more severe illness may experience symptoms such as stiff neck, confusion, paralysis, coma and even death. Fortunately, most people infected with West Nile virus develop the less severe form of the disease or develop no symptoms at all.
Flood-damaged roads to be repaired
Repairs to roads damaged in the 2011 flood are starting and should be finished by Oct. 31, according to the City of Minot.
The Minot City Council on Monday approved a nearly $335,000 bid from Minot Paving Co. to complete repairs at more than 70 locations on non-federal aid roads in the valley. The project is reimbursable by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, with the city paying 3 percent of the cost.
The repairs include patch work, mill and overlay, sidewalk repairs, curb and gutter work, chain link fence replacement and street sign repairs.
Cattle Women call on youth to be beef ambassadors
If you are a ranch kid who is proud of the beef you raise and the lifestyle you lead, or if you're a town kid who recognizes the value of beef in the diet and the economy, the North Dakota Cattle Women encourages people to participate in the 2012 Beef Ambassador Competition Sept. 28-29 at the Doublewood Inn in Fargo, according to a news release.
Beef ambassadors educate consumers about beef nutrition, food safety, and the stewardship practices used on farms and ranches. Contestants participate in mock media interviews and consumer promotion events. They are evaluated for their beef industry knowledge and their ability to educate others.
The 2012 contest has three age divisions: novice (ages 9 to 13), junior (ages 13 to 17), and senior (ages 17 to 20). The winner of the senior division will win a $500 scholarship and can participate i the 2013 national contest. Contact Kathy Tokach at (701) 445-7390 or at email@example.com for more information or to enter the contest. Entries are due