Surveillance of plague

Learn how plague is monitored.

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Number of human cases of plague in Canada

Official reporting of human plague cases by local public health started in 1930, with the first case being reported in 1939. Since then there have been no known cases of human plague in Canada.  

Number of human cases of plague around the world

Historically plague was significant because it caused widespread outbreaks. Plague became known as the “Black Death” when it occurred in Eurasia in the middle of the 14th century.

The World Health Organization (WHO) says that 3248 human cases of plague were reported worldwide from 2010 to 2015. This included 584 deaths.

How Canada monitors plague

Plague is a nationally notifiable disease in Canada. This means that any human cases in Canada are reported to the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC). 

We sometimes get information about plague in wild animals and pets. This information comes from research studies, animal health authorities or Parks Canada.

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