The total number of swine flu deaths in Britain now stands at seven
The deaths of two children and an adult from swine flu have been disclosed, taking the total in Britain to seven.
NHS London confirmed that a nine-year-old child with serious underlying health problems had died after contracting the H1N1 virus. Health authorities in West Yorkshire also confirmed the death of a child and an adult who had the virus, although it is not certain swine flu was the cause of death.
It brings the total number of deaths in Britain to seven. All had other health problems and their identities are being kept confidential.
Dr Margaret Chan, director-general of the World Health Organisation, has said that based on research in Mexico and America, people who have long-term health problems are more likely to die after contracting swine flu.
The most common illnesses recorded so far in people with swine flu who have died are respiratory conditions, mostly asthma, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, autoimmune disorders and obesity.
Last week ministers warned that the swine flu outbreak cannot now be contained and there could be 100,000 new cases per day by next month is current trends continue.
Anti-virals drug Tamiflu will now only be given to those people with the virus and not people they have been in close contact with as health officials move from attempting to contain the outbreak to mitigating its effects.
A spokesman for NHS London said: ‘Once again, we wish to take this opportunity to remind the public that for most people this is a minor illness and that they should start to feel better after a few days without needing to go to their GP or A&E.
‘However, some people may be more susceptible to the virus. If you have flu-like symptoms, it’s important that you talk to your doctor if you are pregnant, very young, over-65 or have long-term conditions such as asthma or diabetes.’