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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Thursday, October 8, 2009

Hawaii reports 11th swine flu-related death

Advertiser Staff

The state Health Department yesterday said an 11th Hawaii resident has died with a confirmed case of the H1N1 virus, or swine flu.

Like previous cases, this person had other health problems that contributed to his death, the Health Department said. The patient was a man in his 50s who died at Tripler Army Medical Center.
The date of death was not disclosed.

The first swine flu-related death in Hawai'i was on June 19, the department said. The death reported yesterday was the first in Hawai'i since August related to swine flu.

"The patient had multiple, additional co-morbidities, and these conditions were contributing factors to his death," Dr. Sarah Park, state epidemiologist and chief of the Disease Outbreak Division, said in a news release. "We are continuing to monitor critical case testing and focused clusters to help identify if this pandemic virus changes into something that causes more severe disease."

In Hawai'i and nationally, underlying health conditions such as obesity, smoking, asthma, heart disease, diabetes and respiratory problems have contributed to H1N1-related hospitalizations and death, the state Health Department said.

Hawai'i on Monday received its first shipment of the H1N1 vaccine from the federal government. Health care workers, pregnant women and other high-risk groups have priority to receive the vaccine. For more information, go to www.hawaii.gov/health/about/H1N1.html.