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First H1N1 Virus Death Recorded In Tuolumne County

Sonora, CA — County Health Officer Dr. Todd Stolp is reporting the first H1N1 influenza death in Tuolumne County.

According to Dr. Stolp a female patient over the age of 60 with other illnesses died from complications of the H1N1 virus the first week of December.

"This loss reminds us that the public should continue to follow recommended precautions while the H1N1 influenza outbreak remains active in our community, in our state, and across the country and globe.

While the overall number of people hospitalized has begun to diminish across the state, pandemic influenza or "flu" often occurs in waves of infection. This particular outbreak has been met with unprecedented response due to the availability of new vaccine technology and increased capacity for surveillance and treatment.

However the specific measures that are taken by the public will continue to play an important role in curtailing the pandemic. Regular hand washing, covering coughs and sneezes in the crease of your elbow and staying home from work or school when sick are still important actions that will help to limit the spread of this influenza virus and the seasonal influenza virus when it shows up in our community this winter.

The H1N1 influenza has already been responsible for illness in hundreds of local residents and is expected to infect over 25 percent of the community throughout the influenza season.

Contact TUOLUMNE COUNTY HEALTH DEPARTMENT (click on Public Health in the left hand column) for additional information.

Written by bill.johnson@mlode.com