Current Affairs
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Africa, Asia seen dangerous viruses emergence

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  • Categories
    World Affairs
  • Published
    1st Aug, 2022


Many of the diseases like Monkeypox, coronavirus, zika, and ebola names that have become all too familiar over the last few years were first reported in either Asia or Africa.

Where are the most viruses found?

  • As per the World Health Organisation (WHO), from January 2021 to the present day, the majority of cases were reported in Asian and/or African countries.
  • There was a 63 per cent increase in the number of zoonotic outbreaks in Africa between 2012 and 2022 compared to 2001 and 2011.

Why are viruses being found in Asia and Africa so often?

  • It’s not that these regions are innately bound to produce new diseases. Multiple factors are at work here.
  • Humans in these continents have a greater chance of coming in contact with animals more often in their many densely populated regions, thus increasing the risk of the spread of diseases.
  • The dramatic, transformative change that many countries are undergoing in these regions — countries like the UK, to an extent, went through a similar experience when they underwent industrialisation in the 18th and 19th centuries and faced diseases like cholera and typhoid.
  • Factors like Increased frequency and reach of travel, changing patterns of land use, changing diets, wars and social upheaval and climate change increase interactions between humans and reservoir hosts, facilitating exposure to zoonotic viruses. 

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