Florida reports 139 swine flu cases

MIAMI, Florida – The H1N1 flu virus continues to spread, with 38 confirmed cases in Miami-Dade County, 31 in Broward County and 139 in Florida as of Thursday, according to local and state health departments. None of the Florida cases has caused a death.

Nationally, the number of swine flu cases reached 7,927, with 11 deaths as of Thursday, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Worldwide cases have reached 13,398, with 95 deaths, according to the World Health Organization.

Comments from CDC experts that the flu now seems less virulent than first feared should not mislead people into lowering vigilance, said John Beier, professor of epidemiology at University of Miami Medical School.

”We’re only a little more than a month into the epidemic,” he said. “We have to expect new cases.”

CDC officials have said they expect more cases, more hospitalizations and more deaths from the H1N1 virus in coming weeks. They say flu cases remain higher now than is normal for this time of year.