- Officials of Inner Mongolia are currently on high alert after receiving reports of a case of bubonic plague.
- Bayannur City has declared alert level 3 to warn the public about the disease.
- The Black Death pandemic claimed millions of lives from 1346 to 1353.
As if being in the thick of coronavirus is not enough, there’s another disease starting to build up in China. In the Chinese region of Inner Mongolia, authorities are on high alert after a reported case of bubonic plague was reported on Sunday.
According to Xinhua news agency, the case was discovered in the northwest part of Beijing, in the city of Bayannur. The municipal authorities were alerted by the hospital handling the case on Saturday.
Workers sanitizing the railway stations in China.
The next day, a city-wide level 3 warning was issued by the local authorities. This is the second lowest warning in their four-level system. The news agency added that the warning will stay put until the end of the year.
The bubonic plague is the disease that caused the Black Death, a pandemic that took place during the Middle Ages. Around 75,000,000 – 200,000,000 people were killed in Europe.
The plague originated from bacteria that was transmitted through infected animals and flea bites. It was considered as one of the deadliest bacterial infections in history. Those infected got fever, coughing, chills, and swollen and painful lymph nodes.
The health authorities in Bayannur are now urging people to be more extra careful to lower the risk of human to human transmission.
Hunting or eating animals are discouraged because this can cause infection.
According to a report from the state-run newspaper China Daily, “At present, there is a risk of a human plague epidemic spreading in this city. The public should improve its self-protection awareness and ability, and report abnormal health conditions promptly.”
The public is asked to report findings of sick or dead marmots – a variety of large ground squirrel that is being used as food in some parts of China and Mongolia.
The marmot was said to have caused plague outbreaks in the region and was pointed as the source of the 1911 pneumonic plague epidemic, which took around 63,000 lives in northeast China.
Infection was also spread through its fur – the marmot is prized for its fur, which were transported and traded around the country.
Cases of the bubonic plague surfaced recently. Two cases were confirmed last week in Mongolia from brothers who consumed marmot meat. In May, a couple from the same country died of the plague after consuming a marmot’s raw kidney which they assumed to be a health remedy.
Months later, in inner Mongolia, two more people got the pneumonic plague, which is another form of the disease.
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