Wednesday, June 3, 2009
Onondaga County Adult Dies of Swine Flu
SYRACUSE, NY--The state's first Swine Flu death outside of New York City was reported in Onondaga County this morning. The spokesperson for the county's Health Department, Dr. Cynthia Morrow, held a press conference to announce the death but did not release the gender, age, or name of the individual. Morrow did state that the individual was an adult who had been hospitalized for the H1N1 virus and had other underlying health problems.
"I was certainly hoping that we would not be here making this type of announcement, but it's always been within the realm of possibility," said Morrow, who upheld that the Swine Flu was no deadlier than any other common strain of the flu.
Nearly 36,000 Americans die each year from flu infections, 2,000 in New York State alone. With the death in Onondaga County and two more deaths in New York City today, eight New Yorkers have now died of the Swine Flu. Ten new cases of the virus in Onondaga County were confirmed today, bringing the county's total to 42 cases. A total of 780 Swine Flu cases have been reported in New York State.
In a statement today, Governor David Paterson alluded to these statistics, stating that Swine Flu deaths, while unfortunate, are not unlikely.
“As more cases of H1N1 are identified in New York State, unfortunately, we expect some cases to be fatal, especially for those who contract the virus and have underlying medical conditions," said Paterson. "This is consistent with what we see during our influenza season each year."
Morrow emphasized the importance of continuing suggested preventative measures.
"Nothing has changed in terms of our message to the public and that is please, if you're sick, stay at home," she said. "We want to minimize the transmission of this virus."
NCC News reporter Chloe Sommers got local reaction to today's announcement.