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Michigan Reports Year’s First Likely West Nile Death

LANSING (WWJ/AP) – A Macomb County man who recently died has been identified as Michigan’s first probable human case of West Nile virus this year, according to state health officials.

Michigan Department of Community Health announced Thursday that the 48-year-old died after being hospitalized earlier this month with West Nile symptoms.

“It is still a probable case,” said the Health Department’s Sue Tremonti. “It has not been confirmed yet. That has to be done at the state laboratory in Lansing and, in my understanding, it will be two, three weeks before that confirmation is known.”

The state had 11 confirmed human cases in 2010, including three deaths.

The agency also says testing detected West Nile virus in a crow that was found dead Aug. 16 in Saginaw County. Mosquito pools from Saginaw County collected this month tested positive and preliminary results indicate infected mosquitoes in Bay County.

Mosquitoes transmit the virus. Most people bitten by an infected mosquito show no symptoms but some become sick.

More information on West Nile, including how to protect yourself and your family, can be found at this link.

Earlier this month, experts reported this has been the worst mosquito season in the area in 20 years.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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