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Almost everyone has been bitten by a mosquito, tick, or flea. Vectors are mosquitoes, ticks, and fleas that spread pathogens. A person who gets bitten by a vector and gets sick has a vector-borne disease. The spread of vector-borne diseases is a significant public health challenge because it is influenced by climate, environment, and human behavior, which require both environmental and human interventions. Warmer temperatures and higher humidity can increase the breeding and survival rates of ticks, while extended periods of hot, dry weather increases viral replication in mosquitoes, both leading to increased human disease transmission. 

Lyme disease (spread by ticks), spotted fever group rickettsioses (spread by ticks), and West Nile Virus (spread by mosquitos) are the three most reported vector-borne diseases in Illinois. In 2023, Illinois reported human case counts with deaths for these diseases:

  • West Nile Virus: 119 cases and six deaths
  • Lyme Disease: 380 cases and no deaths
  • Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever: 19 cases and no deaths

Learn more about:

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In many cases, the symptoms of vector-borne diseases are similar and include fever, rash, headache, arthralgia, myalgia, and neurologic symptoms. VBDs may have highly distinct symptoms that are not seen in other illnesses. The following is a list of all the vector-borne diseases that are reported to the Kane County Health Department, along with links for more information:​

​Tickborne Diseases

Mosquito-borne Diseases


The bite of an infected mosquito or tick transmits vector-borne diseases to humans. Blood transfusion, organ or tissue transplant, and laboratory exposure are other possible modes of transmission. Zika can be passed from a pregnant woman to her baby during or shortly after birth.​


Preventing tick and mosquito bites is the greatest approach to avoid contracting vector-borne diseases. For more information, visit: CDC: Fight the Bite! Prevent Mosquito and Tick Bites​

Information for Healthcare Providers

Health care professionals suspecting a vector-borne diseases​ in their patients should contact the Kane County Health Department to discuss consideration of confirmation testing at IDPH or CDC. In addition to full patient demographic information and clinical information, travel history (with departure and return dates), as well as exposure history should be reported.