Family of first UK swine flu fatality feels devastated

June 15th, 2009 - 7:49 pm ICT by ANI  

Glasgow (Scotland), June 15 (ANI): The family of Jacqui Fleming, the mother-of-three from Glasgow who has become the first person in Europe to die of swine flu, say they are devastated. The 38-year-old from the Carnwadric area of the city had been in hospital for two weeks after giving birth to her third child prematurely.

Although she was described as having “underlying health problems”, her death on Sunday from swine flu shocked her family.

In a joint statement, they said: ” Our whole family is absolutely devastated and we are doing everything we can to support Jacqueline’s two sons and her partner. Jacqueline has been ill in hospital for a number of weeks, but nothing can prepare you for such shattering news.”

Fleming leaves behind a long-term partner and two sons - Ryan, 18, and Sean, 11 - as well as the newborn child.

She had been in intensive care at the Royal Alexandra Hospital in Paisley, Renfrewshire.

Neighbours said that she had previously suffered from strokes or seizures.

Scotland’s First Minister, Alex Salmond, has offered his condolences to the family.

The Telegraph quoted health officials as saying that the UK has been hit harder by swine flu than any other country in Europe with more than 1,200 confirmed cases.

Scotland has been worst hit, with more than a third of the confirmed cases, including another 35 which were confirmed on Sunday taking the total north of the border to 498.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) last week declared the outbreak a pandemic, the first for 40 years.

Official reports say there have been about 30,000 cases worldwide and 164 deaths. The mortality rate is similar to that of normal forms of flu and most victims only suffer a mild illness.

The last pandemic, the 1968 Hong Kong virus, killed about a million people. (ANI)

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