Disease-X will be a disease, experts worry

This time: Corona is still 23 years late. The story of an unknown deadly virus was woven between the two stories by world-bound science fiction writer Arthur C. Clarke. In 1997, ‘3001: The Final Odyssey’ became a bestseller worldwide. This time, the World Health Organization (WHO) itself is expressing the fear of the same unknown germ attack. On their website, the potentially unknown terror is codenamed ‘Disease-X’.

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Four days ago, the World Health Organization (WHO) warned that an epidemic more deadly than Covid could strike in the future. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, head of the WHO, said at the 76th World Health Assembly in Geneva, ‘A new variant of the corona virus or another virus-bacteria-fungus may be behind the possible next epidemic.

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A completely new Ancora bacterium could also be a villain.’ In Who’s terms, Disease-X. Just as the world witnessed at the end of 2019, through the Corona. Most of the experts think that the fear cannot be completely ruled out. Constant monitoring is needed.

What exactly is Disease-X? This phrase is mentioned on the World Health Organization’s website, in the list of possible subsequent outbreaks of infection. The list includes Sarskov, Novel Coronavirus, Ebola, Zika, Henipa, Congo, Chicken Pox, Measles, Rubella, Marburg–as well as infections caused by unknown germs. That unknown infection is called ‘Disease-X’. Experts say that before 2019, Corona was actually Disease-X. Later this virus infection was named Sarskov-2 and the disease was named as Covid-19.

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Public health experts agree with WHO chief’s warning. Virology expert Siddharth Jowardar said, ‘The emergence of Corona three and a half years ago and the experience of a terrible epidemic due to it worldwide has given rise to new fears in our minds. That is, we may have to face such an unknown enemy in the future.’

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According to him, ‘Corona pandemic has shown how shaky we still are in health management globally. There are also huge inequities in health care. Most countries are too weak to deal with such ’emerging’ infectious diseases. So Siddharth feels, ‘If we are not vigilant and strengthen surveillance by improving infrastructure and management, any animal-borne infection could strike back at mankind any day.’ He reports that only animals like bats are capable of producing dozens of deadly diseases such as Henipa, Ebola, Zika, Marburg, Congo-Crimean. Basically from there, the fear related to Disease-X also started.

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Epidemiologist Deepika Shour agrees with Siddhartha, ‘The importance of vigilance and surveillance is immense. But it must be remembered that no matter how big the epidemic is, routine immunization of mothers and children cannot be slowed down.’ According to Deepika, the fatal mistake of postponing routine vaccinations was made everywhere during the Corona period.

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The whole world is still paying its dues. And from here the danger of any old infection becoming Disease-X cannot be ruled out. Another virologist Saureesh Ghosh echoed the same tone. His statement, ‘It is difficult if we do not increase the monitoring of gene changes or mutations of virus-bacteria-fungus. My guess is, not a new virus, but rather a new mutation of an old virus, if Disease-X really does come about. Just as happened in the case of Corona.’

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