COLUMBIA, S.C. (WJBF) — The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control has confirmed one person has died from West Nile virus so far this year in the state.

According to DHEC, the victim was from the Midlands of South Carolina. There have been 11 human cases so far in 2022, with nine of the 11 cases from the Midlands and six of the residents from Richland County/Columbia. There’s also been five birds and 38 mosquito samples found to have the West Nile virus this year so far.

DHEC stresses that the risk of serious illness or even death from the West Nile virus is low. Only one percent or less of people infected “develop a potentially fatal swelling of the brain, known as encephalitis.”

“Most people infected with West Nile virus have no symptoms. About one in five people infected becomes ill within two to 14 days with symptoms including fever, headache, joint pain, muscle pain, and occasionally nausea and vomiting. They may often experience sensitivity to light and inflammation of the eyelids, and some may have a rash,” said DHEC in a statement provided to WJBF NewsChannel 6.

Anyone who has a fever or other symptoms after receiving a mosquito bite are urged to contact their doctor immediately. DHEC says ways to avoid mosquito bites include repellants, having tight fitting screens around open doors and windows, eliminating sources of standing water, and wearing light0colored clothing to cover the skin.

For more information about the West Nile virus, click here.