A Day in the Life of a Public Health Inspector: Vector Borne Diseases Edition

Annoyed campers

Ah, Summer! Beaches, boating, ball games, BBQ’s, and Vector Borne Diseases.

“Vector Borne Diseases” is a relatively LARGE term that is brought on by two incredibly small organisms; mosquitos and ticks –and with the warmer weather we are at an increased risk of coming into contact with these organisms.

Thankfully, CK Public Health Inspectors have “got your back” and are helping to keep you safe. Here is how:

West Nile Virus

West Nile Virus is caused by a bite from an infected mosquito that has fed on an infected bird. The mosquitoes can spread the virus to humans and other animals. CK Public Health Inspectors are actively monitoring west Nile virus by setting up mosquito traps all around Chatham-Kent (Wallaceburg, Dresden, Blenheim, the list goes on!)  Once the traps are set up, the samples are collected on a weekly basis and sent to the laboratory for testing. If a positive case is found in a specific area then your local PHI’s will educate the general public to be more vigilant and apply precautionary measures.

In addition to the active monitoring, sample collecting and educating the public, a CK Public Health Inspector is also responsible for enforcing the Standing Water Bylaw across Chatham-Kent, which helps eliminate standing water – a breeding ground for mosquitos!



Lyme Disease

Lyme disease is caused by a bite from an infected blacklegged tick. The tick needs to feed for a certain time frame (24-36 hours) before it can actually transmit the bacteria. CK Public Health Inspectors identify ticks in order to see if they are potential carriers of Lyme Disease and educate community members when they bring them in for identification purposes.

Please note: Blacklegged ticks are endemic in the Rondeau Provincial Park and you should always do a tick check after visiting the area. If you are unsure about the type of tick, we encourage you to bring it in to CK Public Health for identification at the 177 King Street East in Chatham.

CK PHIs also perform tick dragging around Chatham-Kent to monitor the spread of blacklegged ticks to other neighbouring areas.


#WeAreCKPublicHealth Inspectors and #WeGotYourBack