Spread happiness, not diseases
As an individual, falling ill costs you money, affects your well-being, and gives you a poorer quality of life. But for a country, being unwell is an economic burden to its healthcare system and its associated loss of productive man-hours.
According to the World Health Organization, infectious diseases are caused by pathogenic microorganisms, such as bacteria, viruses, parasites or fungi. As its name suggests, the disease can be spread, directly or indirectly, from one person to another. The 1918 flu pandemic infected 500 million people around the world, and killed between 50 to 100 million people, within the span of a year. It was one of the deadliest pandemics in human history. Although we have yet to see anything as devastating as this, outbreaks such as the influenza, HIV/AIDS, Ebola and Zika show us that infectious diseases pose a constant threat to the human and animal population.
The infectious disease market is huge. It includes diagnostics (instruments, reagents, software), treatment (vaccination, medication) and even after-treatment support. The thing with these diseases is that strains can mutate. What works for an individual may not work for another individual. Researchers in this field are always utilizing the latest technology, constantly looking for better and improved screening and treatment method than the one before.
In this issue on infectious diseases, we have topics ranging from dengue, to hand-foot-and-mouth disease to ebola. We talked about vaccinations, managing strategies from an individual, community and government level, to control and combat the spread of these diseases.
With the many negative things happening around the world ranging from natural disasters to deliberate acts of attacks, we should take time to spread positivity instead. Spread happiness, not diseases.
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Lim Guan Yu
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