The number of plague cases have topped 1800 in Madagascar, including 1,111 pneumonic plague cases, according to new data released by WHO.

Yersinia pestis bacteria, which was grown on a medium of sheep’s blood agar (SBA) Image/CDC

From 1 August to 30 October 2017, a total of 1,801 suspected cases of plague, including 127 deaths (case fatality rate 7%), were reported. Of these, 1,111 (62%) were clinically classified as pulmonary plague, 261 (15%) were bubonic plague, one was septicemic, and 428 were unspecified (further classification of cases is in process).

Since the beginning of the outbreak, 71 healthcare workers (with no deaths) have been affected.

Both UN and local officials say things are getting better. WHO says the number of new cases of pulmonary plague is declining across the country. Meanwhile, Dr. Joséa Ratsirarson, Secretary General of the Ministry of Public Health said (computer translated), “The epidemic indicators are in a decreasing phase. No cases have been recorded in the twenty-two districts during the last fifteen days. Fifteen districts have not submitted a case for a week. Ten districts still have emerging cases.”

In related news, L’Express de Madagascar reports (computer translated) reported that the World Bank will give $5 million to support the national plan to fight the plague.