West Nile Virus Cases and Fatalities Climb in 2006

Posted on March 5, 2007

MosquitoThere may still be some outstanding data but it is already clear that West Nile Virus was a bigger problem in 2006 than it was in 2005 and 2004. Just when it looked like WNV may be fading away the number of cases and deaths climbed again. Here is a comparison of 2006 and previous years.

2006: 4219 cases, 161 fatalities (not final)
2005: 3000 cases, 119 fatalities
2004: 2539 cases, 100 fatalities
2003: 9862 cases, 262 fatalities
2002: 4156 cases, 284 fatalities
2001: 66 cases, 9 fatalities
2000: 21 cases, 2 fatalities
1999: 62 cases, 7 fatalities

According to the CDC's data for 2006 Iowa was by far the state hit with the most cases with 984 - nearly 1,000 cases. Texas had the most fatalities with 29 deaths. Hopefully this isn't a new trend and 2007 will be another down year for WNV. West Nile Virus usually peaks in the late Summer and early Fall periods. It won't be something to worry about until the mosquitoes start to come out again. That's not too far away for people living in the southern U.S. states.

Photo: James Gathany/CDC