NM boy’s Hantavirus death is state’s 2nd in 2013

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — A 12-year-old boy from northwestern New Mexico has become the second person to die of Hantavirus this year.

The state Department of Health says the boy’s home in McKinley County is being checked to help reduce the risk to others.

Hantavirus is a deadly disease transmitted by infected rodents through urine, droppings or saliva. People can contract the disease when they breathe in aerosolized virus.

According to the department, the deer mouse is the main reservoir for the Hantavirus strain most commonly found in New Mexico.

Health Department Secretary Retta Ward says people need to avoid contact with mice and other rodents and need to use caution when cleaning up droppings and nests.

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