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CDC estimates H1N1 flu has killed nearly 4,000 Americans – MedCity Morning Read, Nov. 13, 2009

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced Thursday that the H1N1 flu has killed nearly 4,000 Americans, including 540 children, and sickened about 22 million, the Associated Press reported. The numbers – from April through mid-October – are “a long-awaited better attempt to quantify the new flu’s true toll,” the AP said.

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced Thursday that the H1N1 flu has killed nearly 4,000 Americans, including 540 children, and sickened about 22 million, the Associated Press reported.

The numbers – from April through mid-October – are “a long-awaited better attempt to quantify the new flu’s true toll,” the AP said. Previous death estimates, which relied on counts of confirmed cases, were “an undercount of the impact of the swine flu, as the majority of sick Americans weren’t tested,” The Wall Street Journal reported.

Dr. Anne Schuchat, director of CDC’s National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases, said she expects the numbers to continue to rise, according to the AP. “We have a long flu season ahead of us,” she said.

And not enough vaccine to go around.

As of Thursday, not quite 42 million doses were available, the AP reported. That’s a few million less than health officials had expected.

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