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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

First Russian Dies From Swine Flu

The first Russian to die after contracting the swine flu virus passed away in a Moscow hospital last month, just a day after being diagnosed with the illness, the Health and Social Development Ministry said Monday.

The woman, who wasn't identified, was diagnosed with swine flu in late August with "unlicensed" medical equipment and had several other illnesses that could have caused her death, Deputy Health and Social Development Minister Veronika Skvortsova said at a news conference.

"The main diagnosis regarding what caused the patient's death was acute pneumonia, respiratory failure amid a congenital heart disorder and associated illnesses," Skvortsova said, Interfax reported.

Skvortsova added that it wasn't possible to establish whether the woman had died from swine flu because of her other illnesses.

The woman already was ill when traveling from Bulgaria to Moscow on Aug. 3 and died in a city hospital on Aug. 19, Skvortsova said.

A leading Russian virologist said in a televised interview late Sunday that researchers at his institute had diagnosed the woman with swine flu the day before she died.

"We immediately diagnosed swine flu," Dmitry Lvov, head of the Virology Research Institute, told Rossia state television, Interfax reported Monday.

"We weren't able to take any measures because she died the next day," he said.

Lvov said tens of thousands of people in Russia have contracted swine flu and he planned to provide proof of this claim in about two weeks.

Skvortsova said Monday that 381 people had been officially diagnosed with swine flu in Russia.