What is in Store for Madagascar’s Future?
By Rachael Bonia
Edited By Elizabeth Goodrich
|Locals Preforming Famadihana|
You might of heard of a disease called the Black Plague. It is most well known for its role in the Middle Ages when it wiped out masses of people because of rats and fleas. The Medieval black plague that ravaged Europe and killed a third of its population. They had no cure for it then, and they have no cure for it today. The only thing we have been able to do is keep it contained and locked away, hoping that our immune systems will stay strong enough in case something happens.
In Madagascar, however, something did happen. In fact, it has been happening for years yet no one has really noticed; until this year when it started to become seriously critical to African and other world populations. As of the 2nd of November, “At least 128 people have been killed and more than 1,300 infected by the deadly pneumonic strain of the medieval disease.” (Collins, Danny 2017). The African wet season is set to last until April, and the disease has already spread through nine other African countries.
The disease can be transmitted in many different ways such as from person to person, through air contact, and through body fluids. It can kill within 24 hours. The Foreign Office recently stated that the plague is entering it’s worst moments as of right now, but they are still unsure because of the odd patterns it has had this year. Some people even contribute the long-lasting plague as part of climate change; although this statement is yet to be proven.
The oddest part about this all is that one of the main reasons this plague has been getting worse and worse is because it is fueled by a practice of the locals. The locals will dig up their dead relative’s bodies and dance around with them, and then rebury them. Many of the rotten corpses have or had the bubonic plague and therefore spread it throughout the country. Now the tradition that included the dead relatives is banned, but it doesn't stop everybody. The practice is called Famadihana.
This country is known for yearly outbreaks of this deadly plague, but none as severe or long as this one has been. Who knows what will happen next, or how far it will spread. It wiped out a third of Europe one time, who says it couldn’t happen again? Although luckily we now have much more precautions and variables that could get in the way. Overall, this is something we need to watch out for and warn our family and friends about. Tradition is important, but is it worth risking the lives of our community members?
|Doctor Helping Children|