A male patient died of swine flu on Monday at a major hospital in Ho Chi Minh City, according to the infirmary’s information publicized on Saturday, becoming the second casualty of the disease in Vietnam this year.
The man had renal failure in the advanced stage, an underlying health condition that compromised his immune system against the flu known to be caused by the H1N1 virus, said the Cho Ray Hospital, which had been treating the victim.
The hospital did not reveal his identity.
Twelve other patients at the institution tested positive for the virus strain several days earlier, two of whom have been discharged and the others are being tended, said Le Quoc Hung, director of the hospital’s department of tropical diseases.
A staff member also contracted the flu and has been off, Hung added.
This is the second death of swine flu reported since a 26-year-old woman who had obesity and tested positive for the H1N1 virus died on May 30, following a five-day self-treatment at home.
Another casualty of swine flu in recently times dates back to 2014, after which nonfatal sporadic episodes of infection were reported.
The notable outbreak of the virus this year first occurred on June 1, when dozens of people, including nurses and patients, showed signs of swine flu at Tu Du Hospital, a major obstetric institution in the southern metropolis, with sixteen testing positive for the disease.
Over 80 patients suspected of having been exposed to a woman believed to spread the virus were quarantined for observation.
In 2009 the H1N1 pandemic swept through Vietnam, with more than 9,000 infection cases and nearly 20 deaths recorded, according to the Ministry of Health.
The H1N1 virus can be transmitted by droplets emanating from unprotected coughs and sneezes, hand contamination, and interpersonal encounters in crowded closed spaces, according to the World Health Organization.
The WHO also says in a tropical country like Vietnam, the influenza circulates the entire year round, usually reaching several peaks in the rainy season.