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Mississippi has 1st West Nile virus death of 2017

Mississippi is reporting its first West Nile virus death for 2017.

State Health Department officials say Monday that a person from Grenada County has died.

Nine new cases of the virus were confirmed in Mississippi during the past week, including the person who died. Those bring the state total to 19 laboratory-confirmed cases this year.

Forrest and Hinds counties each have four cases and Rankin has two. Covington, Grenada, Humphreys, Jones, Leflore, Lincoln, Madison, Perry and Scott counties have one each.

In 2016, Mississippi had 43 West Nile virus cases and two deaths.

Most infected people never show symptoms. Some develop a flu-like disease. A few come down with encephalitis or meningitis, which can lead to paralysis, coma and even death.

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