BOISE – A 40-year-old Payette County man is currently hospitalized with a severe and rare form of West Nile virus.
Southwest District Health officials confirmed the positive test results Friday.
The first confirmed case of West Nile in Idaho came a few weeks early this year.
"And unfortunately it is a West Nile encephalitis which is a very serious disease," said Laurie Boston, Public Information Officer for SDH.
Only 20 percent of West Nile cases actually show symptoms, and of that 20 percent, one in 150 show the most severe symptoms like the Payette County man.
Payette County was also the first county in the state to report West Nile positive mosquitoes.
Now, Ada, Canyon, Owyhee, Twin Falls, and Washington counties all have mosquitoes with the disease.
As a reminder here are some of the symptoms to watch for: fever, headache, body aches, nausea, and sometimes swollen lymph glands or a skin rash. West Nile is usually spread to animals and humans from the bite of an infected mosquito, not person to person.
"At this time there is no vaccine for humans, but we need to make sure that if we are showing any of those symptoms that we seek medical attention immediately," said Boston.
Since there are no vaccines for humans, there are things that we can do to prevent us from getting bitten by mosquitoes. Things like using bug spray with deet and eliminating standing water around the home can go a long way. You can get products at any lawn and garden store that will kill any mosquito larvae around the house.
Ada and Canyon counties also have two confirmed cases in horses.
Unlike humans there is a vaccine available to horses, but in both cases the horses were not vaccinated.
The vaccine has an effectiveness around 95 percent. That's why veterinarians strongly encourage all horse owners to vaccinate their animals every year.
In 2012 there were nine confirmed horse cases, and in all of them they were either not current or never had the vaccine.
In 2012 there were 17 human cases in 11 counties.