Woman first to die from swine flu in Maricopa County

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First swine flu death in Arizona

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PHOENIX - A Maricopa County woman in her late 40s died from swine flu complications.

It is the first death in Arizona and the fourth nationwide as a result of the H1N1 influenza.

The woman had a chronic lung condition before she got the flu. The swine flu has now turned deadly in Arizona, but Maricopa County health officials say it will not change the way they monitor the pandemic.

Dr. Bob England, with Maricopa County, say, "Doesn't change a thing. We knew this was coming and unfortunately "

It brings the nationwide total to four deaths from the swine flu. Two-hundred-forty people have contracted the virus in Arizona but the rest of those cases are said to be mild.

Doctors say we need to keep things in perspective.

Dr. Sam Benjamin explains, "How many people are dying every day from not wearing seatbelts, diabetes and heart disease?"

Not to mention the 36,000 Americans who die annually from the regular flu. Now doctors statewide are calling Arizona's first swine flu death unfortunate, but not unexpected and also say it is not a sign for the public to panic.

Dr. Benjamin adds, "It's a tragedy, but people shouldn't be walking around with masks on."

The county is not releasing details about the woman who died.