Don't Worry, It's Just the Plague

Monday, August 03, 2009

An outbreak of pneumonic plague in China has killed two men. The pneumonic plague is a bacterial infection similar to the infamous bubonic plague. Authorities in northwestern China have quarantined the town of Ziketan in Qinghai province to prevent further spread of the disease. However, it is unlikely that the disease will cause the mass fatalities associated with historical outbreaks such as the Black Death. Early diagnosis and treatment with antibiotics cuts plague patients’ mortality rate to less than 15 percent, the WHO said on its Web site. The Takeaway goes for a check-up with Hugh Pennington, a bacteriologist at Aberdeen University.

For a historical look at the effects of the plague, watch below:

Guests:

Hugh Pennington

Hosted by:

Amy Holmes

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