Plague is an extremely dangerous disease, the risks of importation into Russia cannot be completely excluded, but a serious increase in the incidence is unlikely. This was announced to Izvestia on Wednesday, June 15, by an immunologist, the general director of the Clinical Excellence Group, Nikolai Kryuchkov, commenting on the new measures of Rospotrebnadzor to prevent the importation of plague into the country.
According to the expert, even without importation, cases of the disease are periodically observed in Russia, especially in areas close to Mongolia. At the same time, at present, there is indeed a possibility of infection being imported from “not the most calm” foci outside of Russia. As a result, small outbreaks of the disease are possible, but they must be quickly contained.
“We have a very good anti-plague service in Russia since Soviet times. There are relevant specialists, individual anti-plague institutes and corresponding stations. And in general, natural foci have been monitored for a long time, ”Kryuchkov emphasized.
At the same time, he noted that it is impossible to completely exclude the importation of infection, experts can only reduce this likelihood.
“Therefore, the additional measures that are now planned to be taken, I do not think that they will radically change the situation, that is, delivery will still be possible. Even the measures that are being taken are not the most effective. Better than nothing, but this is not a panacea, ”the expert noted.
He clarified that plague refers to zoonoses – infections that are transmitted from animals to humans. In particular, the pathogens are rodents. At the same time, in some cases, infection from person to person is possible, but for this there must be close contact.
According to Kryuchkov, the plague has several forms. Classic – bubonic – has a high lethality, but is curable. So, there are special antibiotics for the treatment of plague, which make it possible to stop the disease with a very high degree of probability. Extremely dangerous is the pulmonary form, which develops rapidly and often leads to death, but it is very rare.
“The infection is really very dangerous, even with treatment it is relatively lethal. And even among regular cases of infection, for example, in China, there are deaths. Even though there is a cure. Therefore, it is better not to get infected, ”the immunologist emphasized.
“Therefore, the infection remains very dangerous, but another thing is that it is still not the same as in the Middle Ages. You can control it,” Kryuchkov summed up.
Earlier Wednesday, the head of Rospotrebnadzor, Anna Popova, signed a decree recommending Russian regions to prepare for measures to prevent the importation of plague into the country. The authorities of the regions were instructed to ensure the readiness of the authorized bodies to carry out measures aimed at preventing the occurrence and spread of infection among the population. In particular, it is necessary to inform citizens about measures to prevent plague.
In addition, the agency recommended determining the categories of citizens who need mandatory vaccination against plague, as well as assessing the readiness of the hospital base in case of detection of infected people.