Ector County Residents Weigh In On Confirmed Case of West Nile Virus

by Josh Navarro
NewsWest 9

ECTOR COUNTY- More cases of the West Nile virus are popping up in the Permian Basin. Now Ector County health officials are warning residents to take precautions and avoid mosquito bites.

A spokesperson for Medical Center Hospital says they've been treating three patients with the West Nile virus, this makes the fourth confirmed case in the Basin.

"You go outside your going to run the risk of anything, getting bit by something by a bee or the West Nile, I really don't think about it too much," Resident Heather Nieto said. "Put some OFF on is really all you can do. I mean no one is going to stay indoors just because you may get bitten by a mosquito."

It isn't stopping Heather Nieto and others from spending time outdoors at Comanche Trail Park in Odessa.

"The mosquitos haven't been that bad but I've seen them on the news, that it's getting out there," Resident, Kendra Ellsworth, said.

Three people are being treated for the West Nile virus at Medical Center Hospital but it's not known what part of the Basin they are from. Just last week, Andrews County had a confirmed case.

The Ector County Health Department also confirmed a probable case of the virus, but no word if that case is related to the ones over at Medical Center.

"We don't have the confirmation with the labs yet so we'd like to get the labs confirmation as well. Because there are several types of diseases that mimic and sometimes they can be diagnosed clinically as being West Nile virus," Gino Solla, Director of the Ector County Health Department, said.

More than 200 cases of the virus have been reported in Dallas County and 10 people have died.

"I am scared about it. It's a serious case, hopefully it won't affect us, hopefully it wont happen more than what it is," Resident, Jessica Sotelo, said.