Two More Possible West Nile Cases Identified

Two More Possible West Nile Cases Identified

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PROVO, Utah (AP) -- Two more possible cases of West Nile virus have been identified in Utah County.

If confirmed, they would bring the number of cases this year in Utah County to three and the number in the state to six, said Stephen McDonald, spokesman for the state Department of Health.

The three cases outside Utah County were in Duchesne, Uintah and Salt Lake counties.

The two new possible victims were children from southern Utah County. Last week, the state confirmed the first West Nile virus case in the state in a man from southern Utah County.

Dr. Joseph Miner, Utah County Health Department executive director, said the two children were hospitalized for a couple of days.

"Both are home now and doing better, but they were very ill," he said.

The area where the three Utah County victims live is near where mosquitoes, three horses and two sentinel chickens have also tested positive for the disease.

"It is pretty dramatic what a hotbed of West Nile virus we have in the south end of the county," Miner said. "Our mosquito abatement staff is working overtime spraying in that area."

The south county area has a lot of standing water because of Utah Lake and irrigation activity, and that leads to mosquito growth, he said.

(Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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