Illinois’ 1st West Nile virus case confirmed in Chicago man

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CHICAGO — The Illinois Department of Public Health says a Chicago resident in his 70s is the first confirmed human case of West Nile virus in the state this year.

It said Tuesday the man became ill in late July.

Department Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike says, “West Nile virus can cause serious illness in some people so it’s important that you take precautions like wearing insect repellent and getting rid of stagnant water around your home.”

The department says 74 counties in Illinois last year reported a West Nile virus positive mosquito batch, bird, horse, or a human case. It reported 176 human cases, including 17 deaths.

West Nile virus is transmitted through the bite of a common house mosquito that has picked up the virus by feeding on an infected bird.

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