July 21, 2009 / 6:20 PM / 8 years ago

Girl dies in Scotland after catching H1N1 flu

LONDON (Reuters) - A 15-year-old girl with underlying health problems has died in Scotland after catching swine flu, the Scottish government said on Tuesday.

<p>A handout image made available to Reuters London in this file photo May 5, 2009 shows the cover of a leaflet that Britain's Department of Health will distribute to households across the country. REUTERS/Department of Health/Handout</p>

The girl, admitted to a hospital in Glasgow last week, is the fourth person to die in Scotland after contracting the H1N1 strain of the virus which is sweeping across the globe.

“As we have seen in previous cases, this patient was suffering from underlying health conditions and her death should not cause alarm among the general population,” Scottish health secretary Nicola Sturgeon said in a statement.

The health ministry said last week 29 Britons had died after becoming infected with swine flu and said it was planning to cope with as much as a third of the population falling ill.

There are an estimated 55,000 new cases of swine flu in Britain a week, although in most cases the symptoms are mild.

Reporting by Matt Falloon; editing by Keith Weir

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