A Tarrant County woman in her 40s has died of a flu-related illness, Tarrant County health officials said Tuesday.
Laboratory tests confirmed that the woman, whose name has not been released, tested positive for H1N1 influenza. In order to comply with federal privacy laws, information about the woman's identity will not be released.
The woman's death comes just one day after the county said they would begin distributing the H1N1 vaccination to select individuals.
“Right now our H1N1 vaccine shipments are coming in slowly and in limited amounts,” stated Tarrant County Public Health Director Lou Brewer. “We will dispense the vaccine depending on availability, focusing first on the target groups, and we remind people to also check with physicians, hospitals and clinics for the H1N1 vaccine.”
The Texas Department of State Health Services has specified that this shipment be used for only pregnant women and high-risk children, including those with chronic illnesses such as asthma, diabetes and chronic heart or lung conditions. The H1N1 flu vaccine is free and will be distributed in Tarrant County on Friday between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. at W.G. Thomas Coliseum in Haltom City.
Additionally, in a news release, the health department requested the following
The community is urged to continue to help fight the flu by using basic prevention measures such as good hand-washing practices, covering your cough and sneeze, avoiding touching your eyes, nose and mouth, staying away from others when you are sick and getting your seasonal flu vaccination. People also are encouraged to get the H1N1 vaccination when it is available.
Additional special events throughout Tarrant County will be announced at a later date as more vaccine becomes available.