VIENTIANE, Aug. 7 (Xinhua) — The Lao government on Friday urged people countrywide to remain vigilant and step up efforts to stop the spread of dengue fever as the rainy season approaches.
Lao health authorities advise that if people fall ill, they should suspect that dengue may be the cause of their illness and get a blood test at a hospital, according to a report from the Lao Ministry of Health.
Five simple measures are advised as being the most effective method of dengue control. These measures consist of closing and sealing all unused containers, flushing out all water vessels, placing small guppy fish in water jars as these eat mosquito larvae, cleaning areas around homes, and finally remembering to do these four tasks each week.
As of Friday, 4,513 people has been diagnosed with dengue fever and nine deaths were recorded.
The highest number of dengue patients is reported in the Lao capital Vientiane at 1,027, while 532 cases were recorded in Bolikhamxay province, and 465 cases in Vientiane province.
The nine deaths included four in Vientiane, two in Bolikhamxay and one each in Khammuan, Xayaboury and Xieng Khuang provinces.
According to the World Health Organization, dengue fever is one of the fastest emerging infections, with Thailand, Laos, the Philippines and Singapore also seeing high incidence. The number of cases in the Western Pacific Region has more than doubled over the past 10 years. Enditem