From the major epidemic of Mpox (formerly known as monkeypox) in 2022 to the developing situation with avian flu to the current reports of Marburg virus in Equatorial Guinea, COVID is no longer as prominent in the news as it once was.
Bird Flu, Mpox And Marburg. Why do it seem like so many new viruses are coming out right now?
Instead, there have been frequent reports of newly developing or re-emerging viruses.
Hence, is the frequency of viral outbreaks rising? Or have we just grown better at spotting outbreaks as a result of technological advancements made during the COVID pandemic? It is possible that the answer is both.
We also could not have imagined how disinformation would affect other aspects of public health. In the past several years, anti-vaccination ideology has been increasingly prevalent on social media, and there has been an increase in vaccine reluctance.
In addition, normal childhood vaccination programs have been disrupted, heightening the danger of outbreaks of vaccine-preventable illnesses such as measles.
Lessons in surveillance
Throughout the COVID pandemic, science has advanced at an unparalleled rate, leading to the creation of new and improved viral detection tools to track outbreaks and the evolution of the virus. Today, many of the scientists who have been watching SARS-CoV-2 have shifted their focus to other viruses as well.
During the pandemic, wastewater monitoring was utilized extensively to detect SARS-CoV-2, and it might similarly be used to track other viruses that represent a risk to human health.