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Hantavirus kills SF County woman

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Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome claimed the life of a 73-year-old Santa Fe County woman, marking the state’s first death this year from the viral illness, health officials announced.

The case also marks the first-ever death of a Santa Fe County resident from the illness, the New Mexico Department of Health said.

Mike Landen, the state’s epidemiologist, said the woman died recently but he did not know when.

A 45-year-old McKinley County woman who survived is the state’s only other Hantavirus case this year.

Hantavirus is a deadly disease transmitted by infected rodents, primarily the deer mouse, through urine, droppings or saliva. People can contract the disease by breathing the virus.

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