If you suspect or have reason to believe that an individual is an endangered adult and is the victim of self neglect, abuse, financial or sexual exploitation, please contact Indiana Adult Protective Services Unit 3 at 800-992-6978 or 260-449-7989.
An endangered adult is defined as an individual who is :
At least 18 years oldIncapable by reason of:
- Mental illness
- Developmental/intellectual disability
- Other physical or mental incapacity of managing or directing the management of the individual’s property or providing or directing the provision of self-care
Harmed or threatened with harm as a result of:
- Exploitation of the individual’s personal services or property
Investigators will receive and investigate reports of abuse and will assist in utilizing available legal, medical, psychiatric, residential and social services that are necessary to protect the health and safety of an endangered adult.
If you or someone you love is being abused or neglected, please contact Adult Protective Services. If you suspect something is wrong, your call could make a difference.
Adult Protective Services Unit 3
602 South Calhoun Street
Fort Wayne, IN 46802
Mosquito season continues! Be sure to stay properly protected during mosquito season by using an EPA-registered insect repellent, wearing long sleeves and pants, or staying indoors when mosquitoes are biting. Additionally, limit standing water on your property by checking for any containers or rain gutters that are holding water and could be breeding mosquitoes.
The time for prevention is now! Don’t wait until you’re notified that West Nile Virus positive mosquitoes have been found in our area to take action!
As of September 20, 2016, a total of 46 states and the District of Columbia have reported West Nile virus infections in people, birds, or mosquitoes in 2016. Overall, 868 cases of West Nile virus disease in people have been reported to CDC. Of these, 448 (52%) were classified as neuroinvasive disease (such as meningitis or encephalitis) and 420 (48%) were classified as non-neuroinvasive disease.
West Nile Virus positive mosquitoes have been identified in 50 Indiana counties, including Adams, Allen, Grant, Huntington, Miami, Noble, and Wabash. Indiana is reporting seven human cases of West Nile Virus so far this year.
Please be advised of another mosquito borne disease, Zika Virus.
Thus far in 2016, there have been 3,314 documented cases of travel related Zika Virus in the continental U.S., in 49 states and the District of Columbia. There have been 28 sexually transmitted cases, and 8 have resulted in Guillain-Barre Syndrome. Also, nationally, there have been 749 pregnant women with any lab evidence of Zika Virus infection.
Local transmission in Florida continues, with 109 cases as of September 28, 2016. Indiana is reporting 39 travel related cases of Zika.
Hoosiers traveling to Mexico, the Caribbean, Central America, and South America should be aware of this ongoing situation and make every effort to avoid mosquito bites.
Additional information can be found on the Indiana State Department of Health (ISDH) Zika page, www.in.gov/isdh/26910.htm, the ISDH mosquito-borne disease page, www.in.gov/isdh/23592.htm, and from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), at: www.cdc.gov/zika.
Updates to county level data in map form are available here. Updates are made whenever new data arrives. State and county level data can also be viewed at the following site, but it is only updated once per week: USGS Maps.
Mosquitoes are vectors that can carry and spread diseases such as West Nile Virus, St. Louis Encephalitis, and LaCrosse Virus. One of the most effective ways to control mosquito populations is to reduce the number and types of mosquito breeding habitats in your community. All mosquitoes require a water source to lay their eggs, which in the hottest part of summer can hatch into larvae within a week. To effectively reduce larval hatching, check your property and your neighborhood for the following common potential residential mosquito breeding sites:
- Fountains, Birdbaths & Water Gardens – replace water in these areas at least twice weekly, or ensure that the water is moving/circulating enough to discourage mosquitoes from laying eggs on the water surface.
- Tires – Tires are especially notorious mosquito breeding sites. They should be properly discarded, covered or stacked in a shed or garage so that they cannot fill with water. If you have a tire swing, make a hole in the bottom of it to allow water to drain out. If you cover them with a tarp, make sure the tarp itself is not collecting water.
- Flower Pots, Garbage Cans, & Recycling Bins – these items can hold enough water to breed mosquitoes.Drain dishes under flowerpots every few days and after rainstorms or move them inside. Cover outdoor trash and recycling cans with tight-fitting lids at all times.
- Downspouts & Gutters – clean them out to prevent a buildup of leaves and organic debris that can hold puddles of water.
- Animal Troughs – clean out animal water troughs at least twice weekly. These are ideal environments for mosquitoes to breed.
- Tarps – these are commonly used to cover log piles, boats, and pools, and they can hold enough water to breed mosquitoes. Make sure water does not collect in tarps used outdoors.
- Wheelbarrows, Tubs, Kiddie Pools, & Unused/Un-chlorinated Pools – these should be stored upside down or under cover when not in use. Ensure that swimming pool covers are not collecting water.
How else can you protect yourself and your family?
When possible, avoid places and times when mosquitoes bite; for most species – between dusk and dawn.
Use an insect repellant containing DEET (N,N-diethyl-m-toluamide) or picaridin. Products with 25%-35% DEET usually provide adequate protection for adults. Do not allow children to apply DEET to themselves, and do not use on infants.
- Wear shoes, socks, long pants and a long-sleeved shirt when outdoors for long periods of time, or from dusk to dawn, when mosquitoes are most active. Clothing should be light colored and made of tightly woven materials to keep mosquitoes away from the skin.
- Make sure all windows and doors have screens, and that all screens are in good repair.
- Use mosquito netting when sleeping outdoors or in an unscreened structure.
The Wells County Health Department treats storm drains in smaller towns within the County for mosquito larvae to help control the mosquito population. Mosquito populations are tested by the Indiana State Department of Health for West Nile throughout the mosquito season. Positive mosquito populations and human cases are monitored throughout the state.
For more information on mosquito-borne diseases, visit http://www.in.gov/isdh/23592.htm.
For maps of current mosquito and human West Nile Virus cases in Indiana, visit http://gis.in.gov/apps/ISDH/Arbo.
For national data, fact sheets, and virology information, visit http://www.cdc.gov/ncidod/dvbid/westnile/
For additional information on a variety of pests and disease vectors, visit the Indiana Vector Control Association’s website at www.ivca.us
Report animal bites to the Health Department and Animal Control!
According to Indiana Law, all animal bites are to be reported to the local Health Department.
If you are bitten by any animal, whether a pet, stray, or wild animal:
REPORT THE INCIDENT by calling 260-824-6489 or filling out an Animal Bite Report
as completely as possible and faxing it to the Wells County Health Department at 260-824-8803 and
the Bluffton/Wells County Animal Shelter at 260-824-6063.
- Dogs, cats, and ferrets that bite a human must be quarantined (either in the home or at the animal shelter, at the discretion of Animal Control) for 10 days, even if it is up to date on rabies vaccines. If the animal is not ill after 10 days, you were not exposed to rabies.
- According to State law any dog, cat, or ferret 3 months of age or older must be vaccinated against rabies with an annual or triennial rabies vaccine by a licensed veterinarian.
- If the animal has not had its rabies shot it must recieve it as soon as possible after the quarantine period is over.
- If the biting animal was a stray or wild animal, contact the Wells County Health Department immediately to discuss what further action should be taken. Wild animals or stray animals may be tested for rabies if they have bitten or scratched a human or domestic animal. Do not attempt to capture the animal yourself if you cannot do so without risking your safety. Contact animal control or a pest control service to capture the animal if the Health Department determines it is necessary to have the animal tested for rabies. The health department does not capture any animals.
Which animals can transmit rabies?
Indiana animals considered to be at highest risk of transmitting rabies to humans include bats, skunks, foxes, raccoons, and coyotes. Dogs and cats can also transmit rabies that they have acquired from wildlife, but pets are rarely found rabid in Indiana. Reptiles and birds never get rabies. Theoretically, rats, mice, rabbits, squirrels, chipmunks, etc. can transmit rabies, but bites from these animals are not considered a rabies risk in Indiana at this time. The Wells County Health Department can help you evaluate the risk of rabies following an animal bite.
HUMAN EXPOSURE: Questions involving human exposures. Calls should first be directed to:
LOCAL DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH
Wells County Health Department: 260-824-6489
LOCAL ANIMAL CONTROL
Bluffton/Wells County Animal Shelter: 260-824-6063
INDIANA STATE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH (ISDH)
2 North Meridian Street - Indianapolis, IN 46204
Information (ISDH): 317-233-1325
Veterinary Epidemiologist: 317-233-7272
DEPARTMENT OF NATURAL RESOURCES
If you have questions about wildlife or nuisance animals
Fish and Wildlife Division: 317-232-4010
ANIMAL EXPOSURE: Questions concerning livestock and domestic animal exposures as well as handling animals and samples.
INDIANA STATE BOARD OF ANIMAL HEALTH (BOAH)
1202 E. 38th Street, Discovery Hall, Suite 100 - Indianapolis, IN 46205-2898
State Veterinarian: 317-544-2400
Companion Animal/Equine Division: 317-544-2387
INDIANA VETERINARY MEDICAL ASSOCIATION (IVMA)
General Information on Rabies: 317-974-0888
What is rabies and how do people get it?
Rabies is a viral disease that affects the nervous system of humans and other mammals. People get infected by rabies virus when a rabid animal comes into contact with a human by breaking the skin, as in bite wounds or scratches. Although rare, it is also possible to get rabies if saliva or other infectious material from a rabid animal gets into a person’s eyes, nose, mouth or open wounds. Wild animals such as opossums, skunks, raccoons, coyotes, and bats, as well as unvaccinated dogs and cats, may carry the disease and transmit it to humans and domestic animals.
How can I tell if an animal has rabies?
The only way to determine if an animal has rabies or not is through laboratory testing of the brain tissue. However, some of the visible signs that an animal might be rabid include: aggressive behavior, confusion, lethargy, attacking for no reason (unprovoked attack), excessive drooling from the mouth, partial paralysis and walking in circles. The strange behavior of rabid animals is due to the virus’s action on the animal’s nervous system. By the time an animal or human is showing obvious symptoms, the disease progresses very quickly, resulting in death.
Why is this important information for Wells County residents?
Although rabies has become much less common due to vaccination requirements and animal control programs, it is an infectious disease that still poses a threat to public health. Very few people die from rabies in the U.S., but cases of animal rabies are continually occurring throughout the country, and many people are vaccinated every year for having been exposed to a potentially rabid animal. In the recent instance of the rabid bat found in a home in Wells County, those who were possibly exposed to the bat received rabies vaccinations as a precautionary measure. In 2007, team players at a softball tournament in South Carolina handled a stray kitten found at a nearby dumpster. The kitten was later determined to have rabies, leading to post-exposure vaccination of 27 of the players. In 2006, a ten year old girl from Bourbon, Indiana died of rabies several months after being bitten by an infected bat.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, wild animals account for roughly 90 percent of the human rabies cases in the United States. Only mammals can get the disease, with some of the more commonly affected animals being raccoons, bats, skunks, coyotes, foxes, dogs, and cats. Cats are the most common domesticated animal infected by rabies. This is mostly due to owners allowing their unvaccinated cats to roam outdoors, or failing to keep their cats up to date on vaccinations.
What can you do to help control the spread of rabies?
- It is extremely important to keep your pets and certain livestock up to date on vaccinations for the safety of your animals and your family.
- If you have been bitten by either a wild animal or domesticated pet, seek medical attention immediately and contact the Wells County Health Department at 260-824-6489.
- If you encounter a wild animal displaying extremely unusual behavior, such as severe aggression, excessive drooling, staggering, or seizures, contact a pest control company or wildlife removal service to safely capture the animal and remove it. For questions about wildlife or nuisance animals, contact the Department of Natural Resources at 317-232-4010, or the Wildlife Conflict Information Hotline at 800-893-4116.
- NEVER handle unfamiliar animals, even if they appear to be friendly, since rabid wild animals may appear to be tame.
- In situations in which you find a bat in your home, and you cannot reasonably rule out the possibility of having been bitten (such as waking up to a bat in your bedroom or finding a bat in the room of an unattended child), have a pest control service capture the bat so that it can be submitted for rabies testing, and contact the Health Department to pick up the animal.
- “Bat-proof” your home to prevent bats from entering and coming into contact with people, especially if you live in an older home with any holes or openings that would allow bats access to the inside of your house.
- Do not leave exposed garbage, food, or litter outside, as it is likely to attract stray or wild animals.
For more information about rabies, visit http://www.cdc.gov/rabies. To learn more about bats and bat-proofing your home, contact Bat Conservation International, Inc. at http://www.batcon.org. The Wells County Health Department, located at 223 West Washington Street in Bluffton, also has free brochures and information packets on rabies.