TitleWest Nile virus knowledge among Hispanics, San Diego County, California, USA, 2006.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2010
AuthorsBethel, JW, Waterman, SH
JournalEmerging infectious diseases
Date Published2010 Aug
KeywordsYoung Adult

West Nile virus (WNV), spread by infected mosquitoes, is a serious public health threat throughout the United States and can cause life-altering and even fatal disease (1). In San Diego County, California, the human infection rate was 0.18 per 100,000 persons during 2003–2006 (5 cases, 1 locally acquired) and then increased to 0.52 and 1.17 per 100,000 persons in 2007 and 2008, respectively, despite few changes in surveillance activities (2). Community-based mosquito control programs, adoption of personal protective behavior (PPB), and education are the most effective ways to prevent human WNV infection because no specific antiviral drug treatment or vaccine exists (1,3). Although WNV-associated illness has occurred in all racial and ethnic groups, Hispanics are potentially at risk because of language and cultural barriers to obtaining information regarding WNV prevention (4). San Diego County Department of Environmental Health’s education and outreach efforts include airing public service announcements in English and Spanish on television and radio and posting information on a website and social networking sites.