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The Florida Department of Health works to protect, promote & improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county, & community efforts.

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Health and Agriculture Officials Urge Mosquito-Borne Illness Awareness

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Tallahassee, Fla.— The Florida Department of Health is advising residents there has been an increase in mosquito-borne disease activity in several counties across the state. Although no human cases have been reported, several horses and emus have tested positive for Eastern equine encephalitis (EEE) virus. West Nile virus (WNV) and St. Louis encephalitis (SLE) virus are also present in mosquitoes in Florida. The risk of disease transmission through bites of infected mosquitoes to humans has increased.

Drowning is the leading cause of unintentional death among children ages 1 to 4, and drownings send an average of 5,900 children younger than 15 years of age to the emergency room each year.

Practicing simple water safety steps can help keep your family safer around water.

Not sure where to begin? Start with these steps:

Never leave a child unattended in or near water. Teach children how to swim. Teach children to stay away from pool or spa drains. Ensure that all pools and spas – both in your backyard and at any public pool you may visit – have compliant drain covers. Install proper barriers, covers and alarms on and around your pool and spa. Learn how to perform CPR on children and adults.

To learn more about drowning prevention, visit (PDF, 497kB)

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