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The World in Medicine
July 21, 2004

Infection Fears

JAMA. 2004;292(3):323. doi:10.1001/jama.292.3.323-c

Fear of epidemics from the bodies of those killed in deadly floods, earthquakes, and other natural disasters sometimes leads to mass burials before the dead can be identified. But such fears are largely baseless, causing unnecessary additional trauma to survivors and wasting needed resources, concludes a report by a British researcher in the May 2004 issue of the Pan American Journal of Public Health (http://publications.paho.org/english/dead_bodies.pdf).