Be aware that hantavirus is out there

Carter Haydu
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Five Hills Health Region

Wherever there are deer mice, there are reasons to take precautions and prevent exposure to hantavirus.

Cypress and Heartland Health Regions consultant medical health officer Dr. David Torr, who is temporarily filling in as Five Hills Health Region medical health officer, told the Times-Herald Moose Jaw-area farmers should definitely be careful when cleaning out grain bins.

“When you come and sweep it up, it’s easy to inhale it,” he said, adding rodents, particularly deer mice, carry the disease in their poop.

Torr said he recommends “wet dusting” as opposed dry sweeping, so as to reduce the amount of potentially hazardous dust kicked up.

However, he said one needn’t necessarily live in the rural area in order to be at risk of the disease. According to Torr, there is the potential for hantavirus-ridden dust in a shed, for example, within city limits.

For more on this story, read an upcoming edition of the Times-Herald.

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