Every unit in a large (five building, 70-unit) apartment complex, Spring Valley Commons, in Spring Valley, NY, is getting treated for bed bugs.
Suzan Clarke of the Journal News reports that:
The treatment – which begins today – comes after residents complained to the county’s health department that they were being bitten in their homes but didn’t know the source of the bites.
Health department inspectors found bedbugs in three apartments in January, and ordered the units treated.
Some residents have said they suffered ill effects from being bitten. One woman, Cassandra Edwards, said she spent thousands of dollars on specialized medical care after she started “breaking out” last fall. Doctors initially thought the situation was due to her lupus, and prescribed medications that didn’t help and caused her to gain weight.
After months had passed without relief, she woke up one morning in December to discover that her bed was crawling with bedbugs.
Her apartment has been treated, and the pests no longer are present, but she said she’s been door-to-door in the complex and found that more than 20 people have a similar problem.
1. Bed bugs most certainly can be bad for your health. Besides the itching and possible infection of bed bug bites, sleep deprivation, stress, anxiety, and potential serious allergic reactions including (in rare cases) anaphylaxis, many people may receive incorrect treatment — as Ms. Edwards did — because doctors simply cannot determine the source of bed bug-related skin problems.
2. The article implies that if you rent in Spring Valley and have bed bugs, you can call the county health department and they will apparently inspect your home and order treatment. Wikipedia tells me this is the Rockland County Health Department.
3. Bed bugs left to fester will spread.
The article notes,
Edwards welcomed the action on the part of the management company, but said it came way too late. She and her neighbors were angry because they said management knew about the bedbug problem since last year and failed to inform tenants.
If they had, she and others could have been spared the upset of having to pack up or discard numerous belongings in order to have apartments treated.