COLUMBUS (AP) - Ohio's confirmed number of West Nile virus cases has increased to 60, more than double the human cases documented just three weeks ago, state health officials said.
Two people - a 76-year-old man in southern Ohio's Hamilton County and an 87-year-old man in Cuyahoga County - have died in what officials are calling one of the worst summers for the mosquito-borne virus in the state and across the nation, The Columbus Dispatch reported today. Statewide, 47 people have been hospitalized, with symptoms that began between July 10 and Aug. 28.
Nationwide, 1,993 cases have been reported to federal health officials, an increase of 403 in a week, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's weekly update. Deaths from the disease this year have hit 87, up from 66 reported a week earlier.
One in five people who become infected with the virus will develop West Nile fever, according to the CDC. Symptoms include fever, headache, tiredness and body aches.
As of today, 36 of Ohio's 88 counties had confirmed West Nile cases in humans, mosquitoes or horses, Tessie Pollock, a spokeswoman for the Ohio Department of Health, said. Cuyahoga County had reported the most human cases of any county, with 21, Pollock said.