Tick alert in Columbia County
The Times Union reports that Columbia County has issued a tick alert, as a resident there may have contracted Powassan virus, a rare and potentially dangerous disease. Symptoms of Powassan virus can range from a mild flu to life-threatening encephalitis, a brain inflammation. The last time there was a confirmed case in Columbia County was 2018, and there have only been 27 cases reported to the Centers for Disease Control from 2011 to 2020. “In Columbia County, we have learned through years of experience that a number of preventative measures can work together for protection against tick-borne diseases,” said Jack Mabb, county public health director. “It is important for residents to plan ahead before outdoor activities, be mindful of exposure while outdoors and to remain vigilant in checking for ticks both while outdoors and afterward for the best chance of prevention against tick-borne diseases.” Experts recommend light-colored clothing with a tight weave so ticks can be seen easily, and staying on cleared, well-traveled trails. Read more about this story in the Times Union.