September 8, 2021
A mobile food pantry will take place on Monday (September 13th) at Crossroad Community Church in Georgetown
News from DPH: The Division of Public Health announces the first human case of West Nile Virus in Delaware since 2018 is reported
DOVER (September 2021) – The Division of Public Health (DPH) announced Friday (September 3rd) that a 69-year-old Kent County man has become infected with West Nile Virus (WNV), the state’s first case of human WNV since 2018, when 10 human WNV cases were reported, including two deaths from the illness. An epidemiological investigation is currently ongoing to confirm any travel history or sources that could have led to transmission. To protect the patient’s privacy, no more information will be provided on the individual at this time.
 
“We’re sad to learn that a case of West Nile Virus has been reported in Delaware,” said DPH Director Dr. Karyl Rattay. “West Nile Virus can be very serious and even deadly, particularly in vulnerable populations. Please take all proper precautions when going outdoors and there is a possibility of being bitten by mosquitoes, like wearing insect repellent, especially if you are among a vulnerable population.”
 
The mosquitoes that cause WNV bite primarily from dusk (evening) to dawn (morning). However, other mosquitoes that cause diseases such as chikungunya, dengue fever, and Zika can bite during the day. It is important to protect yourself by wearing insect repellent whenever you go outdoors.
 
WNV is a mosquito-borne illness that can cause serious health problems. WNV is transmitted by mosquitoes, generally in summer and fall, with a peak period for disease transmissions from mid-August to mid-October. Nearly 80 percent of people infected with WNV will not become ill. While only a little less than 20 percent of those infected with the virus will develop West Nile fever with mild symptoms (fever, headache, body aches, a skin rash on the chest or back and swollen lymph glands), one in 150 people infected will develop severe infection (West Nile encephalitis or meningitis).
 
Symptoms of severe WNV infection include headache, high fever, stiff neck, and/or tremors and muscle weakness. The elderly and those with weakened immune systems are most at risk. Anyone who experiences any of these severe symptoms should seek medical help immediately. Symptoms may progress to stupor, disorientation, coma, convulsions, paralysis, and possibly death.
 
Mosquito Bite Prevention
 
To avoid mosquito bites and reduce the risk of infection, individuals should:
•   Use Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-registered insect repellents. Follow the manufacturer's instructions for reapplication times.
•   If using sunscreen, apply it first and insect repellent second.
•   Adults: Spray insect repellent onto your hands and then apply it to the child's face. Do not apply insect repellent onto a child's hands, eyes, mouth, or on cut or irritated skin.
•   Do not use insect repellent on babies younger than 2 months of age.
•   When outside, wear shoes, light-colored long-sleeved shirts and pants. Dress your child in clothing that covers arms and legs. Mosquito netting can protect one's face and neck, and infants in carriages, strollers and playpens.
•   Use permethrin (an insecticide) to treat clothing and gear (such as boots, pants, socks, and tents), but do not apply to skin.
•   Prevent mosquitoes from entering the house by using screens and keeping windows and doorways tightly sealed.
 
The Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control’s (DNREC) Mosquito Control section announced WNV in sentinel chickens for the first time in 2021 in July. Delawareans are reminded that the possibility of contracting mosquito-transmitted diseases, including WNV and Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE), will continue until colder autumn temperatures in mid-October or later.
 
To report suspected cases of human WNV, call the DPH Office of Infectious Disease Epidemiology at 1-888-295-5156.
 
For more information about mosquitoes and mosquito-borne illnesses, use the following resources:
•   For mosquito biology/ecology and control, contact the DNREC Mosquito Control section office in Dover at 302-739-9917.
•   For requests for mosquito relief in upstate areas from Dover north, contact Mosquito Control’s Glasgow field office at 302-836-2555.
•   For requests for mosquito relief in downstate areas south of Dover, contact Mosquito Control’s Milford field office at 302-422-1512.
•   For animal health questions, contact the Delaware Department of Agriculture’s Poultry and Animal Health Section at 302-698-4561.
•   To report suspected cases of human WNV, call the Division of Public Health Office of Infectious Disease Epidemiology toll-free at 1-888-295-5156.
•   For more information on West Nile virus or Eastern equine encephalitis, visit www.cdc.gov/ncidod/dvbid/westnile/index.htm.
 
For more information on what you can do to prevent West Nile Virus, visit the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention’s website, www.cdc.gov/westnile/prevention/index.html.
Applications are being accepted until September 12th for participation in the Department of Correction Citizens Academy in Sussex County
The Department of Correction (DOC) Citizens Academy will take place in Sussex County beginning October 6th. The program is designed to strengthen public engagement with the DOC through informational presentations, facility tours, and engagement with a wide range of DOC leaders, uniformed officers, and treatment and program providers. 
 
The DOC is looking to recruit a group of local civic-minded residents who are interested in learning more about the DOC and getting a first-hand look inside their facilities, operations and programs.
 
Sessions will focus on a variety of topics, including organizational structure, officer and staff training, prison operations, community supervision methods, medical and behavioral health treatment, and vocational training and education, as well as the DOC’s role in coordinating Delaware’s statewide reentry initiative. 
 
The academy will be held in Georgetown at the Sussex Community Corrections Center, Sussex Correctional Institution, and a Probation and Parole regional office. Click here to learn more and to apply.
 
Applications are due September 12th.
News from the Division of Small Business: EDGE Grants competition reopens to benefit promising early-stage Delaware small businesses
Dover, Del. (September 2021) – Young Delaware companies in need of funding to help expand their business can now apply to compete for an Encouraging Development, Growth and Expansion (EDGE) Grant from the Division of Small Business. The division will be accepting EDGE Grant applications until September 30 from promising early-stage businesses throughout Delaware.
 
Businesses who are less than five years old and employ no more than 10 employees are eligible to apply for an EDGE Grant. The grants are awarded through a competitive selection process. STEM-based companies can receive up to $100,000 for eligible expenses while Entrepreneur Class (non-STEM) businesses can receive up to $25,000.
 
EDGE is a matching grant program. The Division of Small Business matches a winning business’s investment on a 3-to-1 basis. The business can spend EDGE grant funds on expenses that help improve the company’s long-term chances of success, such as a marketing campaign to help acquire more customers or purchasing a needed piece of equipment that can increase production capacity.
 
Applications for the competition round are being accepted until September 30 at 5 p.m. Finalists will pitch their grant proposals to a panel of expert judges with winners announced in early 2022.
 
Businesses should visit www.delbiz.com/edge for eligibility requirements, to download the grant application, and to connect with a Regional Business Manager for assistance.
The Food Bank of Delaware has a number of job opportunities; Click on the photo for more information
Help take a stand against domestic violence through the Turn the World Purple effort on October 16th
REMINDER: A FREE Recycling & Paper Shredding Event will be held on September 25th at Indian River High School
To contact Ron: Ronald.Gray@delaware.gov