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Idaho woman tests positive for West Nile

An Idaho woman tested positive for West Nile, making her the first human case in the state for 2015, according to a Wednesday Southwest District Health press release.

The Washington County women, in her 60s, was not hospitalized, but is still recovering. She started noticing symptoms in late June, according to the release.

A horse in Washington County also tested positive for West Nile, according to the release.

Mosquitoes carry the virus, and contaminated insects are confirmed to be in nine Idaho counties: Ada, Canyon, Gem, Owyhee, Adams, Washington, Valley, Payette and Bingham, according to the release.

Most people infected with West Nile show no symptoms. About one in five end up with a fever, headache, body aches, vomiting, a rash or other symptoms; a few — less than 1 percent — develop a serious inflammation of the brain that can cause permanent damage or death.

West Nile has been present in Idaho since 2004, arriving in a rush across most of the state in 2006 in a year that tallied 23 deaths related to the virus. In recent years it has infected a couple of dozen of Idahoans a year, with no more than one or two deaths reported each year after 2006.

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