In New York 500,000 people have been infected by swine flu, a much higher number than initially estimated by the city's Department of Health, the New York Post reported citing federal officials.

A total of 804 swine flu hospitalizations and 32 deaths linked to the swine flu have been recorded in the city, the paper said.

About half a million New Yorkers may have been infected, Dr. Anne Schuchat director of National Center for Immunization and Respiratory at the CDC said, according to the paper.

Across the nation, the number of sicknesses linked to the H1N1 virus was expected to be 50 times higher than officially reported, she said.