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West Nile Virus Outbreak Viewpoints

JAMA has posted two important resources related to the West Nile virus (WNV) outbreak. A viewpoint by Robert W. Haley, MD, of UT, Southwestern discusses “Controlling Urban Epidemics of West Nile Virus Infection.”  Dr. Haley concludes, “The ability of WNV to mutate and adapt to the environment and the continuing occurrence of large urban epidemics, as seen in Dallas this year, indicate that WNV is likely to remain a serious threat into the foreseeable future.  The explosive pattern of WNV epidemics that could affect any US city coupled with the morbidity and mortality attributable to this disease require preparedness and early decisive action.  Given the effectiveness and safety of available control measures, this is a good time for all local governments to reevaluate and establish policy for response before it is their turn to be visited by WNV.”  JAMA also has posted a “Patient Page” on the West Nile virus.

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