Vector-borne illnesses are those passed to people through another source, such as a mosquito or a tick. These illnesses are not currently widespread in the Northeastern Ontario area. There is a possibility that, as a result of changes in climate and migration, the mosquitos and ticks that are capable of causing illnesses could one day be a concern.
West Nile Virus (WNV) is transmitted from the bite of an infected mosquito. During the summer months, the Porcupine Health Unit conducts weekly mosquito trapping and testing to determine if WNV is present in our area. For the most up-to-date information and how to protect yourself from West Nile, refer to Public Health Ontario’s West Nile Virus site.
Lyme disease is an infection transmitted through the bite of an infected tick. In Ontario, Lyme disease is only transmitted through the black-legged tick. The majority of human cases reported occur as a result of exposure to areas known to harbour infected black-legged ticks. At this time, there are no reported cases of Lyme disease in the Porcupine Health Unit area however the black-legged tick has been identified. For the most up-to-date information on and how to protect yourself from Lyme disease, refer to Public Health Ontario’s Lyme disease site.
If you have any questions or concerns about West Nile Virus or Lyme disease, contact a Public Health Inspector at 705-267-1181 or 1-800-461-1818.