The State has recorded the first H1N1 death of the season, sending out the alert that the virus is still in circulation in the community.

The death reported was that of a pregnant woman, Simi mol (27), wife of Shibu of Maranadu, Kollam district.

She first reported at the hospital with fever and cold on May 26 and was started on Oseltamivir the very next day itself.

The throat swab was taken and sent for testing on May 28. However, she succumbed to the illness on Friday. Health officials said the surveillance of severe acute respiratory illness (SARI) had been strengthened in the community since the rain began.

But people should take care to adopt supportive measures such as nutritious food, adequate rest, and warm fluids as soon as there are signs of any influenza, fever or chills.

Any fever that does not show signs of receding within three days or which seems to worsen should not be ignored. Children should be advised to maintain the general cold etiquette and should be kept at home in case they develop cold or fever.

Pregnant or ante-natal women are at higher risk from H1N1 virus because of their immuno compromised state and should seek medical care as soon as there are any signs of cold and take Oseltamivir as prophylaxis.

In 2010, when a severe wave of H1N1 had swept across the State, there were 32 ante-natal deaths, indicating that pregnant women were extremely vulnerable to the viral infection.

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