Mongolia Shuts Down Part Of Country After Two People Were Infected With The Plague
Mongolia has quarantined part of the country after an outbreak of the plague.
Just when you thought 2020 was done with big news, July has rolled around to show you who's boss.
Health authorities announced over the weekend that two people are being treated after being infected with the plague.
Mongolia's National Center for Zoonotic Disease (NCZD) says the two patients contracted the illness in the western region of Khovd, which has now been placed into lockdown to ensure it's not spread, according to the Daily Mail.
Contact tracing is now underway and there are more than 600 people who had first and secondary contact with the two individuals - who are believed to have come in contact with a rodent.
A hospital in China's Inner Mongolia has issued another alert after a suspected case of bubonic plague was detected.
The plague can kill people within 24 hours if they aren't treated. The illness was responsible for the Black Death, one of the worst pandemics that the world has ever known. It swept through the medieval world and killed up to 200 million people.
Last year, two people were rushed to a hospital in China after succumbing to the illness and their situation was pretty dire.
The plague is caused by bacteria and is transmitted through infected animals and flea bites. It comes in three delicious flavours: bubonic, septicemic, and pneumonic. Bubonic swells the lymph nodes, septicemic infects the blood, and pneumonic effects the lungs.
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So, despite being widely regarded in the western world as a medieval illness, the plague - whilst treatable enough with antibiotics - is making something of a comeback in certain places.
Between the years of 2010 and 2015, more than 3,248 cases were reported. Of those cases, there have been 584 deaths, according to the WHO.
Apparently, the three most likely places in which to contract the plague are Madagascar, Peru, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
However, even if you're in the United States of America, you're not completely removed from the threat. There are a few - potentially up to a dozen - cases reported each year in the USA, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
There were two deaths in Colorado back in 2015, and eight cases reported overall in the state the year before.
Such is the resurgence of the disease that - with nearly 50,000 cases in the past 20 years - the WHO has re-categorised the plague as a re-emerging disease.
If you're worried by this - and you shouldn't be, it's very unlikely - the best way to stop yourself getting plague is to keep yourself away from rodents and their fleas. That means shifting places that they could live, using insect repellent, and reported dead animals.
Follow those steps, and you'll more than likely be OK.
Featured Image Credit: PA