El Paso County swine flu death is first in state

A death from swine flu reported by the El Paso County Department of Health and Environment is the first such death in the state.

The victim was a woman in her 40s. No other details were given.

Swine flu was declared a pandemic in June by the World Health Organization. Since the first outbreaks of the disease, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has reported 302 deaths nationwide.

“We are focusing our efforts on prevention,” said Kandi Buckland, director of the health department. “Since a vaccine specifically for novel H1N1 flu is not currently available, the best way for people to protect themselves is through the same public health steps that protect them from many other illnesses.”

For information about swine flu visit www.elpasocountyhealth.org.