Emerging Infectious Diseases Essay

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Emerging Infectious Diseases

Emerging infectious diseases (EIDs) are the third leading cause of death in the United States and the first leading cause of death worldwide (3). Thus, should EID's be considered an oncoming threat to human existence or is it God's response to our unbiblical stewardship of the Earth or is it nature's practical solution to overpopulation.

Past EIDs

Since the beginning of time, human existence has been overwhelmed by threatening diseases. To begin with, leprosy and other highly contagious skin diseases affected humanity as early as in the days of the Old Testament. Due to its rapidly infectious manner and its degrading and dehumanizing results, skin-diseased victims were often ostracized
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In 1994, Gloucestershire, England was assailed by the infamous and unstoppable "flesh-eating bacteria" or Necrotizing Fasciitis, which virtually devoured its victims to death (2). In March of 1996, 2.6 million cows were slaughtered in the United Kingdom in an effort to rid themselves of the invasion of the Mad Cow disease. Another term for Mad Cow disease is Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE), which is a disease observed solely in cattle. Mad Cow disease or BSE is transmitted to humans via the consumption of infected beef resulting in a fatal human brain disorder known as Creutzfeldt-Jacob (CJD). As a result of this "British beef scare" 32 people died of CJD, of whose deaths were linked to Mad Cow disease (10.e). Similarly, 1 million chickens were gassed to death in Hong Kong in 1997 in order to prevent the already undertaking spread of Influenza A (H5N1) or "Bird Flu". The worst Influenza A epidemic occurred in the United States killing 20 million people in 1918 (10.b). In New York last month, five people died of a rare encephalitis disease caused by a West Nile-like virus, which is believed to have been transmitted from birds, who researchers found to have died from the West Nile virus (8). Finally, and probably the most menacing disease ever in human history would have to be HIV and AIDS, which is still infecting the human population worldwide in gross amounts.
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