Contributor corner: Carrie Arnold

Carrie ArnoldCarrie Arnold is a freelance science writer covering many aspects of health and the living world. Before that, she worked in the field of public health for many years. She has written for a wide variety of magazines and other publications, including Scientific American, Discover, Slate, Aeon, Nautilus and Women’s Health. Carrie lives in Virginia with her husband and cat.

Carrie previously wrote ‘Saved: How addicts gained the power to reverse overdoses’ for Mosaic.

Twitter: @edbites

What is your story about?

Few of us think much about the world of bacteria, viruses, and parasites that surround us. Especially in the US, issues of so-called 'tropical' diseases like toxocariasis, Chagas disease, and neurocysticercosis seem like issues for other countries. With a new wave of these diseases on our doorstep, this complacency could be deadly.

What did you learn that you didn’t expect?

When I started reporting, I expected to find warning signs. But as I dug deeper and spoke with doctors and locals, especially those in South Texas, I realised that we were long past the time of warning signs. Plenty of people were already suffering from deadly diseases that few of us have heard of or can even pronounce. It's easy to make it an issue of "Them," of travellers bringing diseases back or immigrants arriving from other countries. The issue, though, has much more to do with poverty than anything else. Poverty, like many of these diseases, is already here.

Read Carrie’s feature on Mosaic, publishing 11 August 2015.