Jeff Topping/Getty Images
The Culex genus mosquito, the carrier of the West Nile virus, is separated from other mosquitos caught in traps.
California health officials say a 70-year-old Kern County woman is the first human case of West Nile Virus in the state this year, the California Capitol Network reports.
Fifteen counties have reported cases of dead birds or mosquitos with West Nile Virus in 2012, almost double the number of counties with the virus at this time last year.
“People should be concerned about the elevated West Nile Virus activity," said Dr. Vicki Kramer of the California Department of Public Health, "and should take precautions, especially when they’re going to be outside at dawn and dusk when mosquitos are most active.”
Health officials say most people bitten by infected mosquitoes don’t become ill, but some may develop flu-like symptoms and a small minority can become severely ill.