Large Disease Outbreaks Getting More Common

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The world is entering “a new phase” where large outbreaks of deadly diseases like Ebola are a “new normal”, the World Health Organization warns.

Previous Ebola outbreaks affected relatively small numbers of people.

But the Democratic Republic of Congo is dealing with the second ever largest outbreak, just three years after the world’s largest outbreak ended.

The WHO said countries and other bodies needed to focus on preparing for new deadly epidemics.

There have been 2,025 cases of Ebola and 1,357 deaths from the virus during the outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The largest outbreak, in West Africa in 2014-16 affected 28,616 people mostly in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone. There were 11,310 deaths.

Yet the 12 outbreaks between 2000 and 2010 averaged fewer than 100 cases.

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