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AUSTIN, Texas -- Travis County has confirmed a third death from West Nile virus.

A Friday statement from the Austin/Travis County Health and Human Services Department says the victim was older than age 50 and died of West Nile neuroinvasive disease after two weeks of hospitalization.

As of Friday, the department reported 56 human cases of West Nile virus in the county. Meanwhile, the death brought to at least 47 the statewide death toll from West Nile this year.

This is the worst year ever for West Nile in Texas, which has seen about half of the nation s death from the illness. The deaths in Texas have now exceeded the 2003 record of 40.

Mosquitoes spread the virus to people they bite.

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