Tip of the Day

West Nile virus is relatively new to the United States, making its first known appearance in August 1999 during an outbreak in New York City. Since then, it has spread rapidly to more than 40 states, infecting birds, humans and horses. In 2002, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported more than 4,000 human infections in the United States, compared with less than 150 for the previous three years combined. The virus caused 284 human deaths in 2002 in the United States. Most people who become infected with West Nile virus don't become seriously ill and recover fully. You can reduce your risk of contracting West Nile virus by avoiding exposure to mosquitoes. (Source: Mayo Clinic, online at www.mayoclinic.com.)

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