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Girl, 14, battles rare mosquito-borne illness EEE



KALAMAZOO, Mich. (WOOD) – A Kalamazoo County girl is fighting for her life after she was diagnosed with a rare mosquito-borne disease.

On Monday, state health officials announced three cases of Eastern Equine Encephalitis in people living in Berrien and Kalamazoo counties.

Savanah DeHart is one of the people diagnosed with a suspected cause of the virus. The 14-year-old's mother Kerri Dooley told News 8 Tuesday, April 30, 2009

"She's just kid of lays there for now. "Dooley said."

The virus is considered to be rare but state health official in Southwest Michigan from the so far this year.

"A person has a 4% chance of contracting the EEE and then of those 4%, only 1

% actually have encephalitis from it," Dooley said

Savanah's Facebook page

Savanah's mother says her daughter first had what seemed like a simple headache.

"It has probably been the worst time of my life." Dooley said. "I watched my daughter almost check out."

"It sucks. It's a horrible feeling but I can not tell anyone else, just be careful, watch where you're bringing them, "Dooley said.

She said her family does not take precautions to prevent mosquito bites.

As Savanah's immune system fights the virus, the family is taking each day as it comes.

"Dooley said."

"The family is waiting for an additional test from the state to provide further confirmation of Savanah's condition." 19659002] They are planning to transfer to the Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Hospital in Grand Rapids, 19659018 (function ($) {
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