Tenth life is lost to swine flu in Scotland

H1N1 strain is becoming 'predominant' as cases almost double in a week

Swine flu cases have almost doubled in the past week and have claimed their 10th fatality in Scotland.

It is estimated that in the past week, almost 13,800 people have contracted swine flu, compared with 7,000 the previous week.

The H1N1 bug was said by Harry Burns, Scotland's chief medical officer, to be "elbowing out" seasonal flu as the predominant strain. But, he said, while swine flu is most likely to affect the young, seasonal flu is is more of a problem among the elderly.

"It's very important that we continue with the seasonal flu vaccination, because if this virus is affecting young people, seasonal flu tends to affect old people – we need to make sure both of them are protected," he said. "We need to get both vaccination programmes going to make sure we are not hit by both viruses at either end of the spectrum."

The 10th person to die in Scotland after contracting swine flu was a 62-year-old woman from the Forth Valley area. She is said to have had underlying health problems. Nicola Sturgeon, the Scottish health secretary, said as the latest patient numbers were made public: "H1N1 is now really becoming the predominant strain of flu that's circulating in Scotland.

Patient numbers are thought to be more accurate than they were earlier in the year, because a new method of counting has been introduced. The total was based on data from 732 GP practices – equal to 71 per cent of Scotland's total – whereas previously the Scottish Government's weekly updates were based on 58 practices.

Yesterday's figures, announced by Ms Sturgeon at a briefing held at St Andrew's House in Edinburgh, showed a 7 per cent increase in GP consultations for flu-like illness, equal to 103.7 people per 100,000.

The number of samples testing positive for swine flu increased from 17.6% to 34.1%.

Ms Sturgeon added: "We are not unique here – the increases that we are seeing this week, which build on a steady increase over the last three or four weeks, are being mirrored in all other parts of the UK. Northern Ireland has seen an even more dramatic increase this week – their consultation rates are now above 200 per 100,000."

Health officials said a patient from Lanarkshire who had been sent for specialist treatment in England was now in Glasgow Royal Infirmary.

The patient underwent a specialist procedure called extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (Ecmo), where blood is circulated outside the body and oxygen added artificially. Another Scottish patient in hospital in Ibiza is "making good progress".

The European Commission has now licensed the GSK vaccine – one of two which will be used in the UK – and it will start to be delivered over the next few weeks, putting Scotland on track for its planned vaccination programme later this month.

Priority is to be given to vulnerable groups, such as pregnant women and healthcare workers, and by the end of the year is expected to reach 1.4 million people. The seasonal flu campaign begins on Monday.

Arts and Entertainment
TVShow's twee, safe facade smashed by ice cream melting scandal
Life and Style
life
News
Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie reportedly married in secret on Saturday
peopleSpokesperson for couple confirms they tied the knot on Saturday after almost a decade together
Voices
Pupils educated at schools like Eton (pictured) are far more likely to succeed in politics and the judiciary, the report found
voices
PROMOTED VIDEO
Life and Style
ebooksA superb mix of recipes serving up the freshest of local produce in a delicious range of styles
Life and Style
ebooksFrom the lifespan of a slug to the distance to the Sun: answers to 500 questions from readers
News
Actor, model and now record breaker: Jiff the Pomeranian
Video
News
REX/Eye Candy
science
Sport
Alexis Sanchez celebrates after scoring his first goal for Arsenal in the Champions League qualifier against Besiktas
sportChilean's first goal for the club secures place in draw for Champions League group stages
News
i100
News
Down time: an employee of Google uses the slide to get to the canteen
scienceBosses are inventing surprising ways of making us work harder
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs General

    Scrum Master (Agile, Java, team recruitment)

    £45000 - £60000 Per Annum + benefits: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Scrum M...

    Junior Asset Manager

    £25000 - £35000 Per Annum: The Green Recruitment Company: Job Title: Junior As...

    Investment Analyst

    £33000 - £40000 Per Annum Discretionary profit share: The Green Recruitment Co...

    Project Coordinator

    £20000 - £30000 Per Annum: The Green Recruitment Company: Job Title: Project C...

    Day In a Page

    Israel-Gaza conflict: No victory for Israel despite weeks of death and devastation

    Robert Fisk: No victory for Israel despite weeks of devastation

    Palestinians have won: they are still in Gaza, and Hamas is still there
    Mary Beard writes character reference for Twitter troll who called her a 'slut'

    Unlikely friends: Mary Beard and the troll who called her a ‘filthy old slut’

    The Cambridge University classicist even wrote the student a character reference
    America’s new apartheid: Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone

    America’s new apartheid

    Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone
    Amazon is buying Twitch for £600m - but why do people want to watch others playing Xbox?

    What is the appeal of Twitch?

    Amazon is buying the video-game-themed online streaming site for £600m - but why do people want to watch others playing Xbox?
    Tip-tapping typewriters, ripe pongs and slides in the office: Bosses are inventing surprising ways of making us work harder

    How bosses are making us work harder

    As it is revealed that one newspaper office pumps out the sound of typewriters to increase productivity, Gillian Orr explores the other devices designed to motivate staff
    Manufacturers are struggling to keep up with the resurgence in vinyl records

    Hard pressed: Resurgence in vinyl records

    As the resurgence in vinyl records continues, manufacturers and their outdated machinery are struggling to keep up with the demand
    Tony Jordan: 'I turned down the chance to research Charles Dickens for a TV series nine times ... then I found a kindred spirit'

    A tale of two writers

    Offered the chance to research Charles Dickens for a TV series, Tony Jordan turned it down. Nine times. The man behind EastEnders and Life on Mars didn’t feel right for the job. Finally, he gave in - and found an unexpected kindred spirit
    Could a later start to the school day be the most useful educational reform of all?

    Should pupils get a lie in?

    Doctors want a later start to the school day so that pupils can sleep later. Not because teenagers are lazy, explains Simon Usborne - it's all down to their circadian rhythms
    Prepare for Jewish jokes – as Jewish comedians get their own festival

    Prepare for Jewish jokes...

    ... as Jewish comedians get their own festival
    SJ Watson: 'I still can't quite believe that Before I Go to Sleep started in my head'

    A dream come true for SJ Watson

    Watson was working part time in the NHS when his debut novel, Before I Go to Sleep, became a bestseller. Now it's a Hollywood movie, too. Here he recalls the whirlwind journey from children’s ward to A-list film set
    10 best cycling bags for commuters

    10 best cycling bags for commuters

    Gear up for next week’s National Cycle to Work day with one of these practical backpacks and messenger bags
    Paul Scholes: Three at the back isn’t working yet but given time I’m hopeful Louis van Gaal can rebuild Manchester United

    Paul Scholes column

    Three at the back isn’t working yet but given time I’m hopeful Louis van Gaal can rebuild Manchester United
    Kate Bush, Hammersmith Apollo music review: A preamble, then a coup de théâtre - and suddenly the long wait felt worth it

    Kate Bush shows a voice untroubled by time

    A preamble, then a coup de théâtre - and suddenly the long wait felt worth it
    Robot sheepdog technology could be used to save people from burning buildings

    The science of herding is cracked

    Mathematical model would allow robots to be programmed to control crowds and save people from burning buildings
    Tyrant: Is the world ready for a Middle Eastern 'Dallas'?

    This tyrant doesn’t rule

    It’s billed as a Middle Eastern ‘Dallas’, so why does Fox’s new drama have a white British star?