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Rhode Island Man Tests Positive for Rare Mosquito-borne Virus Eastern Equine Encephalitis

State environmental officials said Thursday a six-month-old horse tested positive for the virus in Westerly. Mosquitoes carrying the disease have been found in Westerly and Central Falls.

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Updated:August 31, 2019, 11:02 AM IST
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Rhode Island Man Tests Positive for Rare Mosquito-borne Virus Eastern Equine Encephalitis
Representative Image. (Image: Getty Images)
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A man in Rhode Island has tested positive for the potentially deadly mosquito-borne virus eastern equine encephalitis, said public health officials.

On Friday, the state health department said the case was confirmed in a man over 50 from West Warwick. It's the first human case in Rhode Island since 2010.

State environmental officials said Thursday a six-month-old horse tested positive for the virus in Westerly. Mosquitoes carrying the disease have been found in Westerly and Central Falls.

Ana Novais, the health department's deputy director, says there's a high risk for transmission of the disease to humans through mosquito bites. She recommends taking extra precautions to prevent bites.

In neighboring Massachusetts, there have been four confirmed human cases of the virus this year, one of them fatal.

The virus can cause brain infections.

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| Edited by: Ahona Sengupta
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