Russian Officials Report First Swine Flu Deaths

by VR Sreeraman on  October 28, 2009 at 11:46 AM General Health News   - G J E 4
Four Russians have died of swine flu, health officials said on Tuesday, in the first deaths from the A(H1N1) virus confirmed by Moscow.

Three of the deaths took place in Russia's far eastern Zaibalsky region, while the fourth person died in Moscow, officials said.
 Russian Officials Report First Swine Flu Deaths
Russian Officials Report First Swine Flu Deaths

"According to information from the Zabaikalsky region health ministry, as of October 27, 2009 there have been three fatalities in the region caused by the A(H1N1) virus," Russia's federal health ministry said in a statement.

The Zabaikalsky regional government said in a statement earlier on Tuesday that two women had died with a preliminary diagnosis of swine flu, while a third woman had died of a severe cold-like illness.

It added that one of the swine flu victims had been in the late stages of pregnancy and that doctors had been unable to save her foetus.

Russia's chief sanitary doctor Gennady Onishchenko told news agencies that one of the women, aged 50, had died last Thursday. It was unclear when the other women had died and their names were not given.

Separately, a 53-year-old Moscow woman died of swine flu on Tuesday morning, the Interfax news agency reported, citing the health department of the city government.

"At 9:45 am on October 27... the death of the sick woman was registered," the department was quoted as saying. The Russian health ministry could not be reached by telephone for comment on the report.

In September, the head of a Russian medical academy said a doctor had died of swine flu in what would have been Russia's first death from the global pandemic, but the health ministry later denied the report.

Russia has recorded 1,349 confirmed cases of swine flu, according to the health ministry.

At least 4,999 people have died from swine flu infections worldwide since April, when an outbreak was first reported in Mexico, according to the World Health Organisation.

Source: AFP

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