West Nile virus suspected in two eastern Oklahoma residents

Monday, August 26th 2002, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

The West Nile virus hits home in eastern Oklahoma. It's believed that two people have tested positive for the potentially deadly virus. One in Tulsa, and another in Bartlesville.

News on Six reporter Steve Berg says state health officials are still waiting for the official confirmation, but the word from doctors is that the two people have West Nile. The first is a 69-year-old Bartlesville man. His positive test has been sent to the Centers for Disease Control for confirmation. The other is a 12-year-old west Tulsa boy. He's been treated and released from a local hospital. He lives in an area where a large number of dead birds have tested positive for West Nile. That area is now a priority for mosquito spraying.

State Health Department officials held a news conference Monday morning and Gary Cox with the Tulsa City-County Health Department says the two cases were not unexpected, "we've been expecting of course the positives in bird and now we're expecting them in humans. We're the only county in Oklahoma with a comprehensive mosquito control program."