1st Human Case of West Nile Virus confirmed by Mass Health Officials

BOSTON (AP) — Public health officials in Massachusetts have confirmed the state’s first human case of West Nile virus this season.

The state Department of Public Health said Wednesday that the mosquito-borne illness was confirmed in a man in his 60s from Middlesex County who required hospitalization.

There were 49 human cases of West Nile virus in the state last year.

The health department says the risk of human infection with West Nile is considered to be generally low, but encouraged residents to take precautions, including the use of insect repellant and covering exposed skin when mosquitoes are most active.

Massachusetts is having an active season for another mosquito-borne disease, eastern equine encephalitis. So far there have been seven human cases of EEE, including in a 5-year-old girl. A Fairhaven woman also died from the illness.

Mosquitoes in Bourne, Falmouth, Truro and Wellfleet have tested positive for EEE over the last several weeks.

About Brian Merchant

Brian Merchant grew up in Central Massachusetts and now lives in South Dennis on the Cape. He has been part of the news team in the CapeCod.com NewsCenter since the spring of 2014. He studied radio broadcasting at the University of Tennessee.

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