MOSCOW, September 24 (RIA Novosti) - The World Health Organization has removed Russia from its list of countries with swine flu fatalities, saying that Russia was mistakenly included.
The WHO Regional Office for Europe said on its website: "To date, there have been at least 157 deaths in 15 countries in the Region: Belgium, France, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Norway, the Russian Federation, Spain, Sweden and the United Kingdom."
A ministry source said the WHO "only based its conclusions on information available in the media" and that the ministry was currently in touch with the international organization to set the record straight.
The ministry denied on Monday reports of Russia's first swine flu fatality, saying the cause of death was pneumonia.
A leading Russian virologist told national media that a woman had died of swine flu on August 19 after returning to Moscow from Bulgaria.
Deputy Health and Social Development Minister Veronika Skvortsova said that "not a single lethal case of the A/H1N1 virus has been registered in Russia."
She said the 46-year-old female medic died of "acute pneumonia, aggravated by a congenital heart defect and diabetes".
The official said tests "did not reveal a connection between the A/H1N1 virus, and no such conclusion was reached."
She said the virologist who diagnosed the woman with swine flu was not officially registered in Russia, and had not been instructed to conduct any tests.
Russia has to date registered 381 cases of swine flu.