Oklahoma's swine flu death toll rises to 40

BY SUSAN SIMPSON Modified: January 8, 2010 at 4:27 am •  Published: January 8, 2010
Forty Oklahomans have now died from swine flu or complications, say health officials, who reported on Thursday the death of a Sequoyah man in September.

The cause of death was discovered by state Health Department employees scouring death certificates for deaths related to H1N1.

The man’s name and hometown were not released. Of the 40 deaths in 2009, nine were children. Thirty people who died had underlying health problems.

The number of hospitalizations related to influenza grew last week, with 26 new admissions. That compares to 15 new patients the previous week.

Many county health departments continue offering free vaccinations. For a list of locations, go to www.ok.gov/health.

Health department spokesman Larry Weatherford said H1N1 is the only flu virus circulating in the state, but seasonal flu illness may begin soon.

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