Hantavirus killed Grant Co. woman, officials say

EPHRATA — County health officials have confirmed that hantavirus killed a Grant County woman last month.

The Wenatchee World said the woman in her 30s was hospitalized and died on March 28.

Hantavirus pulmonary syndrome is caused by a virus found in the urine, droppings and saliva of infected rodents. Deer mice are the common carriers of the virus in Washington.

County health officials say hantavirus is fatal in about one of every three cases. Since 1993, 15 people have died from hantavirus in Washington.

Health officials urge people to keep homes, garages and other areas clean and free from rodent droppings. They recommend wetting possibly contaminated areas with disinfectant or bleach solution, and letting it soak for at least 10 minutes before cleaning.

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