An eastern Nebraska public health district has recorded its first West Nile virus death, which is also Nebraska’s first West Nile death of the year.
Terra Uhing, executive director of the Three Rivers Public Health Department, reported the death from the mosquito-borne virus on Monday.
Three Rivers serves Dodge, Saunders and Washington Counties.
No other information, including the age and gender of the person who died, was available.
The Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services confirmed that the death is the first this year attributed to West Nile virus.
Most people exposed to the virus don’t get sick. About 20% become ill, and fewer than 1% experience serious illness that can lead to death.
Those who are older or have underlying medical conditions or depressed immune systems are at higher risk of severe infections.
People can reduce their risk of West Nile by taking precautions to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes.
Residents of the district can obtain free mosquito dunks from the Health Department office at 2400 N. Lincoln Ave. in Fremont. Mosquito dunks are discs that, when placed in bodies of water, kill mosquito larvae.
Nebraska’s first human case this year was discovered in July.
For more information, call the Health Department at 402-727-5396.