LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Michigan health officials say an 87-year-old woman from Kent County is the fifth person to die from the West Nile virus in the state this year.
State Department of Community Health spokeswoman Angela Minicuci (min-uh-KOO'-chee) confirmed the death Thursday.
She had no other details on the woman.
MDCH also said Thursday there have been 87 human cases of West Nile this year in the state with about a quarter of them in Kent County and West Michigan and most of the rest in southeastern Michigan.
The announcements came a day after MDCH Interim Chief Medical Executive Dean Sienko told reporters Michigan is experiencing an "epidemic of West Nile virus activity."
Experts think a mild winter, early spring and hot summer helped stimulate mosquito breeding and the spread of the virus.