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An older Salt Lake County resident is the first Utahn to contract West Nile this year.

The county health department reported Tuesday that the individual remains hospitalized with a more severe form of the infection, known as neuroinvasive disease.

Health officials would not release additional details about the individual, other than to say the person was older than 50. Dagmar Vitek, the department's medical director, said officials believe the individual was exposed in either Salt Lake or Summit county.

In the past decade, 349 Utahns have been infected. Nine of those individuals have died.

Health officials note that residents should worry more about West Nile than Zika.

"With much of the attention on Zika, it is important to remember the more prevalent threat of West Nile virus in Utah," Vitek said. "The mosquitoes that transmit Zika do not currently live in Utah, but two mosquito species that carry and transmit [West Nile virus] do."

She added that the peak season for West Nile is late August and September, and the virus is currently being detected in mosquitoes "so we know it is circulating."

Most people infected with West Nile do not have any symptoms, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Those who do have symptoms — which include body aches, fever and headache — usually experience them within two weeks. Some cases are more severe, and those symptoms include high fever, tremors, disorientation, coma and muscle weakness.

Vitek said fewer than 1 percent of infected individuals get neuroinvasive disease as this Utahn did.

Anyone can get sick from an infected mosquito bite, but health officials warn that those 50 and older with weak immune systems are more at risk.

The CDC states that there is no vaccine or specific treatments for West Nile. Vitek said Tuesday that agencies such as the CDC are working on a vaccine, but "it's a lengthy process."

As of last week, 139 cases of West Nile had been reported across the country this year, and one person has died, according to the CDC.

Health officials suggest Utahns minimize their exposure to mosquitoes by wearing long-sleeve shirts and long pants outdoors, using mosquito repellents and draining standing water around the house.

Twitter: @alexdstuckey