(COLUMBIA, S.C.) -- One person was referred to medical treatment after being bitten by a raccoon that tested positive for rabies in Beaufort County, health officials said Monday.
The individual was exposed to the animal on Oct. 16. The racoon tested positive for rabies two days later.
The victim spotted the animal on the road, thinking it was dead. When the person attempted to move it from the area, the raccoon bit the individual on the finger.
"To reduce the risk of getting rabies, we recommend that people avoid wild animals acting tame and tame animals acting wild," said Sandra Craig, representative with the Department of Health and Environmental Control.
An estimated 275 state residents must undergo preventative treatment for rabies each year, Craig added. Most exposures result from bites or scratches.
The racoon is the fifth animal to test positive from Beaufort County in 2014. There have been 118 confirmed cases in animals throughout South Carolina this year.
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