GENEVA-More than 1,000 deaths from the H1N1 swine flu virus were officially reported in the past week, a sharp rise which brings the global total to at least 7,826, the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Friday.
More than half of the latest fatalities were reported by health authorities in the Americas region.
The winter flu season arrived early in the northern hemisphere this year and continues to be intense across parts of North America and much of Europe.
"In the United States and Canada, influenza transmission remains very active and geographically widespread," the WHO said, adding that the disease now appeared to have peaked in all U.S. regions.
"In Canada, influenza activity remains similar but (the) number of Hospitalizations and deaths is increasing," it said.
It is too early to say whether there has yet been a peak in infections in the northern hemisphere, the WHO's top flu expert said on Thursday, and it will be some weeks before there is a downward trend in the numbers of those catching the virus....