At least according to the World Health Organization.
In its annual World Health Report, the United Nations agency warned there was a good possibility that another major scourge like AIDS, SARS or Ebola fever with the potential of killing millions would appear in the coming years.
“Infectious diseases are now spreading geographically much faster than at any time in history,” the WHO said.
It occurs to me that I could take this in two different directions: 1) I could play it serious and discuss the potential ramifications of a major “plague” outbreak, or 2) I could play it loose and joke around about how the eventual Zombie Apocalypse will spread out of control. Since I’m not feeling particularly serious, I’ll do a little from 2, and a little from 1.
To use a fictional example, if you’ve read the book “World War Z“, which is about the aforementioned Zombie Apocalypse, then you’ve actually read a pretty accurate description of what the WHO is afraid of. People who are sick getting on planes and infecting other people, mass panic causing more infections, etc. Now, the WHO isn’t really worried about zombies, they’re worried about a mutated influenza virus, SARS, or TB.
Personally, I don’t see a lot of point for me to get all bent out of shape about something like that. It’s not even that I don’t acknowledge that it could happen, it’s more that if I got all fired up every time a UN agency told me that another “disaster” was going to happen, I’d never get anything done. The usual precautions apply, don’t fly when you’re sick, if a family member gets sick and then suddenly drops dead you should go to the hospital, and of course continue to supply the house for a breakdown in emergency services.
Of all the things that concern me, that would be number 1. It’s not getting sick, it’s that I just sort of assume that if there is a general panic, the .gov isn’t going to do anything to help me – I’m on my own. So that’s the caution for my regular readers – while it’s good to take precautions against getting bird flu or whatever, it’s also good to be prepared for the government to do exactly diddly to help you.