Earlier is was reported that a person in Franklin County had Hantavirus and now we know that person died at Trios Hospital in April according to news reports. The unidentified woman died on April 25th and they are still waiting on the pathology report to tell them cause of death. This is the 4th case of Hantavirus in Washington State so far this year and the Health Department wants you to be aware of the risks.

Hantavirus can be transmitted by breathing contaminated air with the virus or direct contact with saliva, urine, nesting material, or feces from rodents contaminated by Hantavirus. Cleaning around rodent infested areas use caution, wear protective gloves, avoid all wild rodents, and avoid dust and dirt in rodent areas.  You can prevent rodents in your house and workplace by closing holes they can enter, cleaning food scraps, and catch them with snap or sticky traps if you are infested.

Remember that Hantavirus is rare but if you think you have been exposed be aware of the symptoms for up to 8 weeks after exposure. Symptoms include fatigue, fever and severe muscle aches with advanced respiratory symptoms of coughing and shortness of breath. Make sure you see your doctor right after you think you might have been exposed.