A 26-year-old from the Cape and islands with no history of underlying medical problems has died from swine flu, the 11th death in Massachusetts attributed to the novel virus, state public health authorities announced this morning.
It was reported today that 3 more Massachusetts residents died as a result of the swine flu; a 53 year old, a 20 year old and a 21 year old. The Boston Globe has said they all had “serious underlying health conditions,” but the deaths of such young adults have me alarmed.
“The virus has proven especially dangerous to people already coping with respiratory ailments such as asthma, heart disease, diabetes, and conditions that impair the body’s ability to fight invading germs. And as the deaths of the 20- and 21-year-olds demonstrate, the germ known by the scientific name H1N1 has also proven to be a particular threat to young adults, as well as children.
A federal advisory panel yesterday recommended that children and young adults be among the groups that are at the top of the list to receive a vaccine against swine flu, which could be available as early as October.”
So we’re getting reports of more deaths, as is expected. The flu in general is a serious condition, and the usual victims are the very young and very old.
Not so in Massachusetts, which today reported its first swine flu death, a 30 year old woman. Not so in New Jersey, which also reported its first swine flu death, a 49 year old man. Not so in Utah, where 2 people between the ages of 25 and 50 became the state’s third and fourth swine flu related deaths. Not so in Connecticut, where a woman in her 40’s became the state’s 3rd swine flu death. Not so in Canada, where a woman in her 50’s became the country’s 6th swine flu death.
This is just an overview of a few specific cases because it really is too soon to tell what kind of pattern will evolve. Some reports state these people had underlying health conditions, but won’t say what they were exactly.