The South Dakota Department of Health has reported it's first case of the protozoan parasite, cyclospora last week, and it's first fatality due to West Nile virus (WNV) on Aug. 20, according to a health department news releases.
Health officials say the WNV death was reported in a yet unidentified, elderly Turner County resident.
In 2013, The Mount Rushmore State has recorded 52 human WNV cases, 15 positive blood donors, eight positive birds, two positive horses and 249 positive mosquito pools.
State epidemiologist for the Department of Health, Dr. Lon Kightlinger said while expressing his sympathies, “Our sympathy is with the family. We only hope their tragic loss will encourage others to take seriously the threat of West Nile and take steps to protect themselves."
In addition, the state also recorded its first case of cyclosporiasis on Friday. This is the first case of the parasitic disease in the state in five years.
Health officials say whether the S. Dakota case is linked with the other outbreaks.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, as of Aug. 20, they have been notified of 598 ill persons with Cyclospora infection from 22 states.
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