He said he is speaking out to warn others of the disease.
“I’m just trying to help other people avoid getting this,” Swann said. " There’s a lot of old people and maybe lives could be saved.”
In the Southeast region, others states reporting cases of West Nile include Louisiana with 31 cases and five deaths, North Carolina with four cases, Mississippi with two cases and Alabama, Florida, South Carolina and Tennessee have each reported one case.
Of Georgia’s six cases reported in 2022, two cases have been found in “presumptive viremic blood donors”, or people who had no symptoms of West Nile when they donated blood, but whose blood tested positive when tested for the virus.
According to the CDC, most people infected with West Nile virus do not experience any symptoms. With severe cases, affecting 1 in 150 people, individuals’ nervous systems are involved, resulting in inflammation of the brain, spinal cord and membranes that surround the brain.
Other symptoms include high fever, headache, neck stiffness, stupor, disorientation, coma, tremors, convulsions, muscle weakness, vision loss, numbness and paralysis. People ages 60 and up have a higher risk for severe illness if infected.
DPH recommends removing water-holding containers, changing water frequently in pet dishes, changing bird bath water at least twice a week and avoiding using saucers under outdoor potted plants to reduce mosquito breeding.
“It’s important to keep in mind that mosquitoes don’t know county or community boundaries so an individual may live in one county but may have been bitten by an infected mosquito miles and miles away,” said DPH spokesperson Nancy Nydam, in a statement to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
“If the virus is detected in any county or community, that does, indeed, indicate that the virus is circulating and precautions should be taken, not just for one neighborhood but for the general area and region.”
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150: Number of COVID-19 deaths reported in Georgia for the week ending Sept. 14, 2022.
6th: Georgia’s rank among 50 states and Washington, D.C. and Puerto Rico for the highest number of COVID-19 deaths per capita that week.
65+: the age group with the most deaths reported for the week ending Sept. 12, 2022, with 81.6% of that week’s deaths.
Sources: U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention State Profile Report for the week ending Sept.14, 2022 and Georgia Department of Public Health COVID-19 Trends for the week ending Sept. 12, 2022.