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Health Officials Strive To Take Sting Out Of Dengue Fever

Source: Vientiane Times

Health authorities are advising provincial health departments to actively monitor their areas in the fight against dengue fever, as the prevalence of the disease in the provinces is higher this year than last.

As of May 18, 1,234 people had been diagnosed with dengue fever and two deaths were recorded.

Most of the cases occurred in Attapeu province with 184, while 327 cases were reported Vientiane, and 169 cases were reported in Vientiane province.

Local officials and health authorities are urging people to clear potential mosquito breeding sites around their homes and workplaces to curb the spread of the virus.

Head of the Health Department in Attapeu province, Dr Vong Aphai Vongxalasith, told Vientiane Times that health officials are heavily involved in Covid-19 prevention and control, but are determined to reduce the number of dengue cases.

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Rising temperatures are believed to be a causal factor in the broader spread of the mosquito-borne virus.

Teams of officials are visiting communities to provide information, with activities focused on long-term prevention rather than treatment.

People are being advised to keep their surroundings clean while killing as many mosquitoes as possible as well as their larvae. Authorities have been raising public awareness about dengue prevention methods as one of the main strategies to lower transmission of the virus.

Every family should throw out any water that collects in jars, vases, and dishes and should cover such vessels to prevent more water from filling them. Village heads, associations, charities, and monks are also crucial in the battle against dengue fever.

Meanwhile, improvement of the diagnosis and treatment of dengue at hospitals and dispensaries is necessary to prevent unavoidable deaths.
According to a Ministry of Health report, five simple measures are advised as being the most effective method of dengue control. These are being practised by households in Laos and other Asean countries where dengue is prevalent.

These measures consist of closing or 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