Not new news. Bubonic plague can be spread by multiple vectors: airborne (coughing from an infected individual) and fleas. It’s also not new news that people of the time lived in less healthy conditions. Nor is it new news that the poor were generally less healthy than the wealthy.
It’s annoying that Dr. Brooks - or the Guardian’s editing of his remarks - seem to imply all the above is new, and further that the plague was transmitted solely by airborne vector.