LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) - Arkansas health officials are warning residents to avoid tick bites after confirming that a case of the Heartland virus has been confirmed in the state's northwest.
The patient was infected by a Lone Star tick but has since recovered. The virus causes flu-like symptoms and generally requires a hospital stay.
There is no vaccine or drug available to address the illness. Health officials say more than 20 cases have been reported in the southeastern and south-central United States, and that one person has died.
The Arkansas Health Department advises people going outside to use insect repellants, wear long-sleeve clothing, avoid bushy or wooded areas and routinely check for ticks.
The virus was first described in 2012 after infections in Missouri and Tennessee.
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