MA health officials report year’s 1st human case of West Nile Virus

FILE - This 2006 file photo provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows a female Aedes aegypti mosquito in the process of acquiring a blood meal from a human host. The The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Tuesday, Jan. 19, 2016, announced new guidance for doctors whose pregnant patients may have traveled to regions with a tropical illness linked to birth defects. Officials say doctors should ask pregnant women about their travel and certain symptoms, and, if warranted, test them for an infection with the Zika virus. The virus is spread through mosquito bites. (James Gathany/Centers for Disease Control and Prevention via AP, File)

BOSTON, Mass. (AP) – State health officials say a Bristol County man is hospitalized with the first confirmed human case of West Nile Virus this year.

No other information was given about the man except that he’s in his 50s and was likely bitten by an infected mosquito in early to mid-August. The Department of Public Health is investigating to determine exactly where the exposure most likely occurred.

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State public health veterinarian Dr. Catherine Brown says mosquitoes carrying West Nile Virus have been found in many areas of the state. She calls the danger “widespread and ongoing,” and urges residents to take precautions including using insect repellent when outdoors and draining any pools of standing water around homes.

There were 16 human cases of West Nile Virus in Massachusetts last year, none fatal.