San Bernardino County has reported its first death attributed to West Nile Virus.
Officials made the announcement on Monday. They did not release any further details.
Maxwell Ohikhuare, M.D., San Bernardino County Health Officer, said in a statement:
“We are greatly saddened by this death that has occurred in San Bernardino County. We extend our heartfelt condolences to the family. We continue to see an increase of WNV activity throughout the County and therefore, we strongly encourage that the public takes appropriate precautionary measures to protect themselves against mosquito bites. People over 50 years old should be especially cautious, as they are more likely to develop serious illness if they contract the virus.”
A total of 19 people have contracted the virus in San Bernardino County this year.
West Nile Virus is transmitted through the bite of an infected mosquito that has fed on an infected bird. Signs and symptoms may include fever, body aches, rash, nausea, vomiting and headache.
Most people infected with the virus have no symptoms. However, some people may develop severe symptoms which can lead to brain inflammation or paralysis.