Urban Outbreak

Startled by rising pneumonic plague cases in Madagascar’s largest cities, residents waited in lines for antibiotics and bought face masks last week.
Long viewed as a disease affecting remote regions rather than cities, this year’s cases are concentrated largely in Antananarivo and Toamasina. Officials canceled school and banned public gatherings as the death toll rose to 63 people.
Madagascar’s public health minister rallied doctors and health workers last week, barring them from vacation until the threat subsides. The WHO has released $1.5 million in funds and dispatched plague specialists, and the Red Cross is sending a plague treatment center.

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