Deadly plague epidemic in Madagascar shares similarities to the Ebola outbreak that killed 11,000, reveals expert as he warns another spike in cases is imminent

Tuesday, November 14, 2017
By Paul Martin

Dr Derek Gatherer, from Lancaster University, made the claims about Ebola
The haemorrhagic fever decimated West Africa in 2014 and killed 11,000 people
Official figures show at least 2,034 people have been struck down by the plague
However, it is expected the ‘worst outbreak in 50 years’ will continue to spiral
Ten countries have been placed on high alert, with Malawi now bracing itself
Other scientists fear this year’s outbreak will reach well beyond mainland Africa
Two thirds of all the cases have been caused by the airborne pneumonic plague
This can spread through coughing, sneezing or spitting and kill within 24 hours

By STEPHEN MATTHEWS
DAILYMAIL.COM
14 November 2017

The deadly plague epidemic in Madagascar which has killed 165 people appears to be similar to the Ebola outbreak, a concerned scientist has warned.

Dr Derek Gatherer, from Lancaster University, revealed the plague could escalate in the same way as the haemorrhagic fever that decimated West Africa in 2014 and killed 11,000 people.

Official figures show at least 2,034 people have been struck down by a more lethal form of the ‘medieval disease’ so far in the ‘worst outbreak in 50 years’.

However, it is expected that the number of cases will continue to spiral as the ‘crisis’ will blight the country off the coast of Africa until April.

Speaking exclusively to MailOnline, Dr Gatherer, of the university’s biomedical and life-sciences department, said: ‘Following it [the plague] is a little bit like following the Ebola outbreak a couple of years ago.

‘By standards of plague outbreaks, this one is a whopper really, and we should hope we wouldn’t get more of these in subsequent years.

‘We can’t get complacent about it until we get past that April boundary as there’s a danger of a flare-up.’
He also warned that both Ebola and plague ‘can be passed on via close contact’, and that the virulent plague ‘will go for anybody’.

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