The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) issued a news release on August 1, 2023, about the possible increased risk for Valley fever in California. CDPH has designated August as Valley Fever Awareness Month due to higher rates of infection that occur during the summer and fall months.
California locations with highest rates of infection
The highest rates of Valley fever are found in Central Valley and Central Coast regions. This includes Kern, Kings, San Luis Obispo, Fresno, Tulare, Madera and Monterey counties. Increased rates of the fever have recently occurred in other regions, such as Northern San Joaquin Valley and Southern California.
Prolonged respiratory symptoms
Valley fever affects the lungs. Symptoms can last a month or more and include:
- Chest pain
- Fatigue or tiredness
Laboratory tests are needed to determine whether a patient has contracted Valley fever instead of another respiratory disease (including COVID-19). If Valley fever is diagnosed, determine if treatment is needed.
Resources with additional information
- CDPH Valley Fever Toolkit
- The Lancet, Planetary Health – new research on the effects of weather and the rising rates of Valley fever in Western U.S.