Infectious disease causes the deaths of almost 9 million people annually. The infectious diseases of poverty are more prevalent in middle- and low-income countries, especially among children under 5. Infectious disease is the result of bacteria, parasites, viruses, and fungi whose spread is fostered by impoverished conditions. Infectious disease continues a cycle of poverty through its economic cost and lost working days. Impoverished populations in Africa, Asia, and Latin America carry a major economic burden because of disease. The epidemiological transition, a shift from infectious to noncommunicable diseases as major causes of morbidity and mortality, is occurring in middle- to low-income countries, but it is not complete. Currently, infectious disease continues to contribute to the development of noncommunicable chronic conditions in middle- to low-income countries.

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