West Nile Virus Still Hasn't Appeared in Utah

West Nile Virus Still Hasn't Appeared in Utah

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(Salt Lake City-AP) -- Well into a summer that has seen West Nile virus spread faster than ever, there's still no sign of the disease in Utah.

Health officials say it's been found in neighboring Colorado and Wyoming. And there's no doubt it will come to Utah sooner or later.

The Utah Department of Health has tracking, monitoring and testing systems in place to detect the virus when it does get here.

Utah agencies are using many methods to watch for the entry of the virus. Mosquitoes are being trapped and dead birds and sentinel chicken populations are being tested.

The virus is spread by mosquitos to birds. It can also be transmitted to humans -- where it is sometimes deadly.

It has shown up in 32 states so far this year. Last year at this time, only 20 states had documented it. Idaho, Nevada and Utah are among the states that haven't recorded cases this year.

(Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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