By NewsDesk   @bactiman63

UN health officials report the  number of plague cases reported in Madagascar in 2019 has remained below the 5-year average.

Bipolar staining of a plague smear prepared from lymph aspirated from an adenopathic lymph node, or bubo, of a plague patient./CDC

Since 5 August 2019, 88 plague cases have been reported in 14 districts with a majority of bubonic form (77 cases).

Plague is endemic on the Plateaux of Madagascar. A seasonal upsurge, predominantly of the bubonic form, usually occurs yearly between September and April.

Related: Congo, Madagascar top countries reporting most plague 2000-2009, US reports 57 cases

According to the general secretary of the Madagascar Ministry of Health, between 300 and 600 suspected cases are reported each year, with about 30 cases of pulmonary plague and 10 to 70 deaths.