A/H1N1 pandemic death toll exceeds 10,000, says WHO

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The death toll of A/H1N1 influenza continues to increase worldwide, reaching at least 10,582 by Dec. 13, the World Health Organization (WHO) said in a latest update on Friday.

Of all the deaths, some 6,335 occurred in the Americas, and at least 1,654 occurred in Europe. The other four WHO regions, Western Pacific, South-East Asia, East Mediterranean and Africa reported 1,020, 892, 572 and 109 deaths respectively.

The reported number of fatal cases is an under-representation of the actual numbers as many deaths are never tested or recognized as influenza related, the WHO noted.

The H1N1 flu virus was first identified in North America in April, and the WHO declared the new influenza as a pandemic in June. So far the virus has caused infections in more than 208 countries and overseas territories or communities.

In the temperate zone of the northern hemisphere, transmission of the pandemic influenza virus remains active and geographically widespread. However, disease activity has peaked or passed its peak in many places, particularly North America, according to the update.

In the temperate region of the southern hemisphere, sporadic cases of pandemic influenza are being reported without evidence of sustained community transmission.

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