Laos' Ministry of Health has reported at least 3202 confirmed cases along with eight associated fatalities of dengue fever as of Thursday, July 16. The most affected area is the capital Vientiane with 678 reported cases, along with three associated deaths, while 401 cases have been reported in Vientiane province. A further 359 cases were reported in Bolikhamxay province. Lao health authorities are urging citizens to clear out mosquito breeding sites to help control the spread of the disease.
Further spread of the outbreak is likely over the coming weeks.
Symptoms of dengue fever include fever, headache, muscle and joint pain, fatigue, nausea, and rashes. Dengue Hemorrhagic Fever (DHF) is a potentially deadly complication that is characterized by high fever, the enlargement of the liver, and hemorrhaging.
Individuals in Laos are advised to take measures to protect themselves from mosquito bites (e.g. by wearing covering clothing, using insect repellent, and sleeping in a screened-in or air-conditioned room) and to eliminate possible mosquito breeding grounds on their properties (e.g. small pockets of fresh water, such as rainwater that has collected in cans, bottles, tires, flower pots, clogged gutters, etc.).
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