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Agency: 1st hantavirus case for 2019 reported in New Mexico

May 24, 2019

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico health officials report that a 50-year-old McKinley County woman is the state’s first reported case this year of hantavirus, a severely respiratory illness that can be deadly.

The Department of Health’s announcement Friday that deer mice are the main carries of hantavirus pulmonary syndrome in New Mexico, with the virus found in mice droppings and urine.

According to the department, a person can contract hantavirus by breathing in mist or dust when droppings or urine containing the virus are stirred up and the virus is put into the air.

The department says people can also get hantavirus by touching their eyes, nose, or mouth after they have touched droppings or urine that contains the virus.

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