A 12-year-old girl from the north-central province of Thanh Hoa has become the third Vietnamese victim this month to die from the H1N1 subtype of the influenza A virus.
The girl, known as N.T.H., died Tuesday at the National Hospital of Tropical Diseases after suffering respiratory failure.
When H. was admitted to a hospital in Thanh Hoa's Vinh Loc District on April 16, she had a fever, was coughing and having trouble breathing.
One day later with her difficulty breathing getting worse, she was transferred to another hospital in the province.
She continued to deteriorate and with her lungs showing signs of serious damage, she was transferred to the National Hospital of Tuberculosis and Lung Diseases in Hanoi.
From there H. was transferred once more to the National Hospital for Tropical Diseases, where she tested positive for H1N1.
She was put on a life support machine to help her breathe and treated with the antiviral drug Tamiflu, but doctors were unable to save her.
According to her family, she came down with flu-like symptoms after her brother-in-law from Hanoi, who was suffering from flu-like symptoms, had visited her home in Thanh Hoa.
Two other family members also became ill, but recovered after several days without hospitalization.
It was the third H1N1 fatality to be reported this month. The two others were men aged 23 and 40, both hailing from Yen Bai Province.
According to Tran Nhu Duong, vice chief of the National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology, the 2009 H1N1 type A influenza virus accounts for nearly half of the flu cases detected this year.
H1N1 patients tend to suffer from complications if they are not treated early, he said.
Experts recommended that people with flu-like symptoms be isolated so as not to spread the illness.