WSPY Photo

WSPY Photo 

Illinois has had its first death from West Nile Virus according to the Illinois Department of Public Health.

A Will County resident who became sick in late August and tested positive for West Nile virus has died. There have been forty cases in Illinois this year. Last year there were 42 cases and four deaths.

The virus is spread through mosquito bites. People over fifty and immunocompromised people are at higher risk for severe illness.

Health officials continue to urge people to wear insect repellent and cover up when outdoors, keep mosquitoes out the home, and to get rid of standing water where mosquitoes lay their eggs.

Larger puddles or flooded ditches can be reported to the local health department.