First H1N1 flu death in Minnesota

by Jessica Van Berkel

Minnesota suffered its first death from the H1N1 influenza, the state’s Department of Health announced today.

The 5-year-old girl from Minneapolis was infected last week.

She was hospitalized briefly at Children’s Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota in Minneapolis where she died on Thursday, said her mother, according to the Star Tribune.

Aaron DeVries, an adjunct assistant professor in infectious diseases at the University of Minnesota, told MPR "this is a child who had multiple underlying health conditions, and had been quite ill much of the child’s life."

Minnesota has confirmed 274 cases of the H1N1 flu, which was recently declared a pandemic.

There have been over 18,000 cases across the US, and the Centers for Disease Control have reported 45 deaths nationwide.