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A 24-year-old Sacramento-area woman has died at UCD Medical Center after being hospitalized with the H1N1 flu virus, Sacramento County Public Health Officer Glennah Trochet, M.D. confirmed today. The death occurred today, June 23. She is the first person in Sacramento County to die from the H1N1 virus. “We would like to convey our deepest sympathy to the family of this patient,” Dr. Trochet said. ‘We know that H1N1 is present throughout our community, as it is throughout the nation. The vast majority of cases have mild or moderate illness, and the patients recover.

Tragically, in this case, recovery did not occur,” said Dr. Trochet. This is the 9th person to die from H1N1 in California in 2009 based on data provided by the California Department of Public Health’s H1N1 web site (as of the data table’s most recent update on June 18).

“Unfortunately,” said Dr. Trochet, “we anticipate that there will be more deaths throughout the United States and California before this outbreak ends. Sacramento County is seeing a lot of flu activity for this time of the year, which is why everyone should continue taking steps to prevent catching the flu,” Dr. Trochet said.

There is currently no vaccine available to protect against the novel H1N1 virus, but Dr. Trochet said there are actions people can take to help prevent the spread of germs:

  • Cover your mouth when you cough and sneeze, preferably with a tissue. Dispose of the tissue after each use. If you don’t have a tissue, cover your mouth by coughing into your elbow or sleeve, not your hand.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth, even after washing your hands.
  • Avoid close contact with sick people.
  • Stay home from work or school if you are sick.
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