Once upon a time, the U.S. was a safe place for travelers. These days, reports of health crises at home and overseas would normally cause Americans to reconsider travel abroad. Not so in the case of Malaysia. According to the National Travel and Tourism Office, Malaysia has seen a 500 percent increase in U.S. travel in the first ten months of 2018.
Problems are not just confined to Southeast Asia, and some health experts say the Asia-Pacific region is a ground zero for a potential resurgence of the human coronavirus. Deadly lab-grown outbreaks are particularly concerning in countries that did not prepare for them, which explains the outbreak in China last year, in which a man died from encephalitis and a man or woman in Australia is likely dead from a severe form of a new, novel coronavirus variant.
In this, the fifth and final installment of “We’re Reading the Number Wrong” — a series examining science-related narratives that Americans don’t know much about — we look at who is telling the public who is and isn’t vaccinated, when the country should consider a deep dive into an obscure scientific topic, and the alternative truths that Americans are reading about a wide variety of health and safety issues.