Mosquito-borne Caribbean fever found in NE Indiana

Published: .
Updated: .
Indiana health officials say a mosquito-borne virus that has spread quickly since the first locally transmitted case in the Western Hemisphere in December has been confirmed in a Fort Wayne-area resident who recently traveled to the Caribbean.

The Indiana State Department of Health says the chikungunya virus detected in Allen County doesn't often cause death, but symptoms including high fever and joint pain can be severe. Other symptoms include headache, muscle pain, joint swelling or rash. It says most patients feel better within a week, but joint pain can persist for months.

The agency says people who develop these symptoms after traveling to the Caribbean or other areas where chikungunya is found should contact a health care provider immediately.

It also advises people to protect themselves against mosquito bites. One of the easiest ways to control the mosquito population is to limit areas of standing water where mosquitoes like to breed. Unused tires left outside can collect water and become an ideal place for mosquitoes to lay eggs.
The Marion County Public Health Department's Mosquito Control program will host its annual Tire Amnesty Day on Saturday, June 14 from 8 a.m.-4 p.m. at several locations around Indianapolis. In partnership with participating Meineke Car Care, this special tire drop-off event collects old passenger car tires from Marion County residents at no charge.
People can bring up to six passenger car tires, off of the rim. Tire Amnesty Day is for individuals and not for use by tire retailers or auto salvage yards. All tires collected will be recycled.
"The dark color of a tire attracts and retains heat, holds enough water to hatch eggs and offers protection from predators and chemical treatments," said Chuck Dulla, administrator of Mosquito Control at the Marion County Public Health Department. "In addition to reducing the mosquito population, proper disposal of old tires helps reduce the spread of West Nile virus and other mosquito-borne diseases."
Drop-off locations on June 14 include:
            Marion County Mosquito Control                    4001 E. 21st St.
Southeast Community Organization (SECO)   1925 Fletcher Ave.
Meineke Care Care locations in Indianapolis:
North:  4101 N. Keystone Ave.
                        5323 W. 38th St.
                        6401 E. 82nd St.                         3702 W. 86th St.
            East:    8410 E. Washington St.
                        7352 Pendleton Pike
            West:   7290 W. Washington St.
            South:  3150 S. Madison Ave.
                        4905 S. Emerson Ave.
For more information about Tire Amnesty Day, contact the Marion County Public Health Department Mosquito Control program at 317-221-7440.

The Associated Press contributed to portions of this article.