Chinese authorities in the region of Inner Mongolia have completely sealed off a village after it was reported that a resident died from bubonic plague. The bubonic plague is an old disease that dates back over a century and is responsible for one of the most deadly pandemics in history.

Bubonic plague toll

On August 2, the death of the resident was reported to health authorities in Baotou city. On August 30, the victim was confirmed to be a bubonic plague patient, according to a statement released by the Baotou Municipal Health Commission on its official website.

According to the statement, the patient died of circulatory system failure. However, it was not mentioned how the patient caught the deadly plague.

To help stop the spread of the disease, the authorities immediately sealed off Suji Xincun village, where the patient lived. Homes were disinfected every day and all villagers have tested negative so far.

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The patient had 9 close contacts and 26 secondary contacts, and all of them have been quarantined and have tested negative. Damao Banner, the district where Suji Xincun is located, has been placed on Level 3 alert for plague prevention.

This is now the second case of bubonic plague and the first death that was confirmed by China this year as reported by CNN.

The previous case was recorded in July in Bayannur, which is another city in Inner Mongolia, leading to the issuing of Level 3 alert and closure of tourist spots in the area.

Bubonic plague is caused by bacteria that are transmitted through flea bites and infected animals. The plague has killed 50 million people in Europe during the Black Death pandemic in the Middle Ages. It causes painful, swollen lymph nodes, fever, chills, and coughing.

Numerous antibiotics, which can treat the infections of the disease if they are caught early, have helped to contain plague outbreaks and it helped prevent the type of rapid spread that happened in the Middle Ages.

However, the plague has not been eliminated entirely through the years, and now has made a comeback. This lead the World Health Organization or WHO to categorize the bubonic plague as a re-emerging disease.

Common recurrence

According to the World Health Organization, around 1,000 to 2,000 people get the plague every year. But that is just an estimated number since there are still a lot of unreported cases.

According to a data in 2016, the possibility of the bubonic plague to exist on almost every continent in the world is high. It could be existing in some parts of Brazil, numerous areas in southeast Africa and China, India, the Middle East, and the United States, and it may be undetected.

In the United States, there have been a few dozen cases of plague every year, as reported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In 2015, two people in Colorado died from the bubonic plague, and in 2014 there were 8 reported cases in the state.

In China, 31 cases of the plague were reported between 2009 and 2019, and there were 12 deaths during those years, according to the data presented by the National Health Commission.

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