MOSCOW, July 23. /TASS/. Several cases of bubonic plague recorded in Mongolia are not interrelated, do not represent an outbreak of the disease and are a usual occurrence for this region, Head of the Department of Infectious Diseases of the Pirogov Medical University of the Russian Healthcare Ministry, professor Vladimir Nikiforov told journalists.
"Two unrelated cases with three people infected - this is not an outbreak! For Mongolia this is a usual occurrence, they've always had and will have the plague in this region, every year several incidences of plague are registered, we know it perfectly well. All anti-epidemic measures were undertaken in the region adjacent to the border [with Russia]: the ban on hunting marmots was announced, the local population was inoculated," as he is quoted by the press service of the Russian Healthcare Ministry.
The professor explained that plague may be contracted either through an infected flea bite or through skin wounds and scratches while carving the infected dead rodent. "The pathogen dies with food processing (boiling, frying the meat). The bubonic form of the plague is not passed from human to human," the expert stressed.
He also added that the plague is treated with antibiotics and the pathogenetic therapeutic complex. That is why today this is an absolutely treatable illness, unless the treatment was started late and the patient has already developed toxico-infectious shock. "There is an anti-plague vaccine but the most important thing is to avoid contact with sick animals. In this particular case - not to hunt marmots in the regions endemic for plague, specifically here in Russia this includes the Altay Region and the Transbaikal Region," he concluded.
Earlier in Mongolia several cases of bubonic plague were registered, on July 14, the death of a 15-year-old was reported in Govi-Altai aimag (province) in the south-west of the country. According to the Mongolian authorities, a couple of days prior to this, the young man and his friends had eaten a dish made with meat of a tarbagan - a Mongolian marmot which is often the carrier of this disease.
In turn, the Federal Service for Surveillance on Consumer Rights Protection and Human Wellbeing reported that it is monitoring and controlling the plague situation, including bubonic plague and other infectious diseases on the territories bordering Russia.