South Dakota records first West Nile Virus death of 2021

Photo courtesy Alpha Media

PIERRE, S.D. – A 42-year-old woman living in Union County is South Dakota’s first human West Nile Virus death of the 2021 season. The person’s name was not released. 

The virus is spread by mosquito bites. South Dakota’s first human case was reported in 2001. Since then, the state has reported more than 2,600 human cases and 47 deaths.

Those most at risk from West Nile Virus include residents over 50, pregnant women, organ transplant patients, individuals with cancer, diabetes, high blood pressure or kidney disease, and those with a history of alcohol abuse.