Common flu far more deadly than swine flu in U.S.

(ABCNews) – The Florida Department of Health wants to put the swine flu (special report) scare into perspective. There are no confirmed cases of swine flu in Florida so far. However, thousands of people die each year from common strains of influenza.

Reported by: Don Germaise
Email: dgermaise@abcactionnews.com
Last Update: 3:56 pm
Swine Flu Fears Spread Throughout Mexico  (Getty Images)

Swine Flu Fears Spread Throughout Mexico (Getty Images)

TALLAHASSEE, FL — The Florida Department of Health wants to put the swine flu (special report) scare into perspective. There are no confirmed cases of swine flu in Florida so far. However, thousands of people die each year from common strains of influenza.

According to the state health department web site, Florida averaged 2,477 deaths per year from the flu and pneunomia between 2005 and 2007. Pinellas County averaged 150 deaths per year in that time period. Hillsborough County averaged 86 deaths.

The Centers for Disease Control estimates 36,000 people die annually in the United States from the flu. A disproportionately large number of Floridians are in the group. The flu is far more dangerous for the very young and very old. Florida has more deadly cases of the flu than most states because of its elderly population.

A state health department spokesman told ABC ActionNews.com this afternoon they received 50 samples of possible swine flu cases in Florida. None of them tested positive.

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