Novel diseases and pandemics have captured our global attention. Yet, for all we hear about them, what do we actually know — or perhaps more accurately, not know about them? Here we dispel common myths about novel diseases and pandemics.
Myth 1. They’re just a public health problem.
Novel diseases and pandemics typically are perceived to fall squarely into the public health realm. Paradoxically, they actually interface with nearly every other sector. For example, they raise major concerns for food production, biosecurity and environmental health. And their implications can be expensive; the costs of SARS to the global economy was estimated by BioERA at >$30-$50 billion, and the past decade of outbreaks has been responsible for hundreds of $US billions in losses. Continue reading