From May to September, the Calhoun County Public Health Department participates in a vector borne disease surveillance program to obtain data on the prevalence of Lyme disease (transmitted by blacklegged ticks) and Zika-transmitting mosquitos in the county. A vector refers to an organism that is able to transmit a disease from one living thing to another, such as mosquitoes and ticks. Obtaining this information will help the county prioritize areas of concern where these vectors are abundant and form strategies for their control.
There are 20 different types of ticks that are known in the state of Michigan, and because different species carry different diseases it’s important to know which species are located in Calhoun County to be better prepared on preventing the spread of these different diseases.
The Calhoun County Public Health Department offers “tick kits” to the community that includes an informational booklet for tick-borne disease prevention as well as the necessary materials and instructions for collecting and submitting live ticks to the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) laboratory for testing. Pick up your FREE tick kit at the Calhoun County Environmental Public Health office or visit the MDHHS website for more details.
Calhoun County Public Health Department’s staff, in partnership with MDHHS, conducts surveillance of mosquitoes that is crucial in identifying if the mosquitoes in our county are carriers of disease. The most common emerging mosquito-borne illnesses within the United States are West Nile, Zika, LaCrosse, and Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE).
For tips on safety and preventing mosquito bites visit the CDC Mosquito Bite Prevention page.
- Ticks and Your Health booklet: Preventing tick-borne illness in Michigan
- CDC Tick Webpage
- CDC Mosquito Webpage