Laos reported 32,364 cases of dengue fever in 2022, a significant increase from 1,400 cases in 2021, according to the Lao health ministry.
According to a report issued on Thursday by the Center of Information and Education for Health under the Lao Ministry of Health, the dengue virus has killed 24 people across the country in 2022.
The highest number of dengue patients was reported in the Lao capital Vientiane at 15,358, while 4,899 cases were detected in Luang Namtha province, and 1,759 cases were recorded in Luang Prabang province.
The 24 deaths included six each in Vientiane and Attapeu, five in Luang Namtha, three in Saravan, two Xieng Khuang, one each in Sekong and Oudomxay province.
The Lao Ministry of Health is encouraging health officials to campaign about dengue and raise awareness of preventive measures among the general public.
The ministry advised anyone with a high fever, headache and muscle aches to visit the hospital to receive advice and treatment from medical staff. Patients should avoid buying over-the-counter treatments and self-medication.
The country has been successfully preventing avoidable deaths over recent years with the majority of medical staff improving their diagnosis and treatment of dengue fever at hospitals and dispensaries, according to the report.
The Ministry of Health has vowed to continue developing the capacity and knowledge of doctors and nurses, aiming to guarantee the quality of healthcare services in the crucial battle against dengue fever.
Health authorities advise five simple measures as the most effective methods of dengue control which are being practiced by households.
These measures consist of closing and sealing all unused containers, flushing out all water vessels, placing small guppy fish in water jars as they eat mosquito larvae, cleaning areas around homes, and finally remembering to do these four tasks each week.