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Israel reports 19 West Nile fever cases since May

Jerusalem, June 22 (VOICE) The Israeli Health Ministry has reported 19 cases of West Nile fever diagnosed since the beginning of May, with several of them detected in the last two days.The Ministry noted on Friday in a statement that 17 of the diagnosed patients were hospitalised, with three of them currently ventilated, Xinhua news agency reported.

All cases were detected in central Israel, said the statement, advising the public to take measures to reduce exposure to mosquitoes.

It noted that the annual incidence of the virus in Israel began earlier than usual this year due to climate change, with humid weather in the centre of the country leading to the breeding and development of mosquitoes in this area.

The virus, primarily transmitted to humans via mosquito bites, usually results in flu-like symptoms, including headaches, fever, weakness, muscle and joint aches, conjunctivitis, rashes, and occasionally, nausea or diarrhoea.

About one in 150 infected individuals will develop severe illnesses that impact the central nervous system, such as encephalitis or meningitis, which can result in paralysis, brain damage, and even death.