A/H1N1 influenza death toll rises over 4,700, says WHO

October 16, 2009 8:59 pm 

GENEVA, Oct. 17 — At least 4,735 people worldwide have been killed by the A/H1N1 influenza since the new flu virus was identified in April, the World Health Organization (WHO) said in a latest update on Friday.

Of all the deaths, 3,406 occurred in the Americas, 530 occurred in South-East Asia and 432 occurred in the West Pacific. The other three WHO regions, Europe, East Mediterranean and Africa reported 207, 90 and 70 deaths respectively.

The WHO, which declared the A/H1N1 flu as a pandemic in June, said the total number of lab confirmed cases worldwide is now over 399,232, but this case count is significantly lower than the actual number of cases that have occurred because many countries have stopped testing and reporting individual cases.

Influenza activity continues to increase in the northern temperate zones across the world, according to the UN agency.

But influenza rates in the temperate zones of the Southern Hemisphere have all returned to below baseline levels and very few detections of pandemic H1N1 2009 virus are being reported.

So far there is still no signs showing the H1N1 flu virus has mutated into a more dangerous form than the one first discovered in Mexico and the United States in April, the WHO said. (PNA/Xinhua) LBV/utb

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