Plague in Madagascar kills 75, death toll rising

By Kenyan Report Correspondent

Wednesday,October 18th,2017

Black Death plague has hit Madagascar, a poverty-stricken nation, off the east coast of Africa.

The highly contagious plague which has claimed 75 lives in less than two months is one of the deadliest to ever hit the island.

This is not the first time the plague has infested the country.

Madagascar has frequently suffered plague outbreaks every year since the 1980s, mostly sparked by mice fleeing forest fires.

According to reports by World Health Organisation (WHO), this outbreak is unusual as it has affected urban areas with Antananarivo-the country’s capital being the hardest hit.

A total of 805 infections have been reported since October 1, 2017, said WHO in a statement.

The plague bacteria have been found to develop in rodents and are carried by fleas.

The pneumonic version of the bacteria is transferred through coughing in humans and can be fatal within 72 hours. Most of the Madagascar cases are pneumonic form; the bubonic form is less risky.

The outbreak has sparked panic across the island despite the government appealing for calm.

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