The Washington PostThe Washington Post

Covid, monkeypox, polio: Summer of viruses reflects travel, warming trends

By Mark Johnson

01 Sep 2022 · 8 min read

Editor's Note

There are a number of factors accelerating the spread of pathogens around the world. The Washington Post explains how “we are the invaders of the viral world, not vice versa.”

In 13 years as an infectious-disease doctor in the suburbs of New York City, Azfar Chak has fought viruses, both routine and rare. But he had never experienced a summer of viruses like this one. No one had, at least not in this part of the world.

A third year of the coronavirus, driven by a more contagious variant. Global outbreaks of monkeypox and a mysterious hepatitis afflicting previously healthy children. Polio virus found in the sewage systems in London and New York. And polio diagnosed in patients in Jerusalem and Rockland County where Chak works, a region of more than 300,000 people just north of New York City.

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