Health officials have confirmed that a 34-year-old man's death in July stemmed from his contact with a rabid bat in Contra Costa County earlier this year.
The Contra Costa County resident died on July 31 while working in another country, months after apparently contracting rabies from a bat in the
southern part of the county, Contra Costa Health officials said.
When tests confirmed rabies to be the man's cause of death, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention launched an investigation that linked the cause to his contact with a bat.
The man became sick after leaving the U.S., health officials said.
It is Contra Costa County's first rabies-related human death in nearly 20 years.
Most human rabies infections in the U.S. are caused by exposure to rabid bats. While cases of infections in the U.S. are rare, rabies is often
fatal once symptoms of the illness appear, according to health officials.
People are urged to not handle bats or other wildlife, and any contact should be reported to local health officials.
State and county health and animal services officials planned a press conference in Martinez at 10 a.m. to further discuss the case.