Four more U.S. states as well as U.S. territory Puerto Rico have reported their first death of the A/H1N1 flu in the past week, according to the latest statistics released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on Friday.
On its website, the CDC reported there have been 40,617 confirmed and probable cases of the H1N1 flu in all the 50 states plus the District of Columbia and U.S. territory Puerto Rico and Virgin Islands, with 263 deaths in 28 states.
The latest CDC statistics show that the states of Georgia, Indiana, Nebraska and Tennessee had their first deaths of the H1N1virus in the past week.
The Georgia Department of Community Health (DCH) said earlier in the week that a 43-year-old woman in Cobb County had become the first victim of the H1N1 flu in the state where 174 cases have been confirmed so far.
In Indiana, state health department said in a news release in the week that a resident of Dearborn County in southeastern Indiana had been confirmed as the first death in the state after the citizen died from complications related to the pandemic.
Indiana has so far reported 282 confirmed cases of the H1N1 flu and more than 30 patients have been hospitalized since April.
Later in the week, Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services announced that a 50-year-old woman in Custer County had been the victim of the H1N1 virus in the state. There has been 264cases of the H1N1 flu in the state, the department added.
Almost at the same time, Tennessee health officials confirmed its first death from the H1N1 flu as well as 246 confirmed cases in the state.
However, the CDC has not yet confirmed the first two deaths of the H1N1 virus in the U.S. territory Puerto Rico. Puerto Rico Health Secretary Concepcion Quinones said that the first two victims involved a 27-year-old man with a history of asthma and a younger man with severe respiratory problems.
Meanwhile, epidemiologist Johnny Rullan says an additional eight deaths suspected of being caused by the H1N1 flu are being investigated in the U.S. Caribbean territory.
With more deaths of the H1N1 virus reported across the nation every day, a new national study among 675 physicians revealed that48 percent of U.S. physicians believe the H1N1 flu would develop into a worldwide catastrophic pandemic.
The study was conducted earlier this week by HCD Research using its MediaCurves.com website, and the Muhlenberg College Institute of Public Opinion (MCIPO), to measure physicians' personal and professional views on the issue.
As the upcoming influenza season approaches in the fall and winter months, it is uncertain how the new H1N1 virus may affect U.S. populations.