VIENTIANE, Oct. 3 (Xinhua) -- The dengue virus has killed 21 people and infected 26,867 across Laos so far this year, according to the country's Ministry of Health.
In the last 24 hours, another patient died in Attapeu province while 41 new infections were reported, according to a report issued by the Center of Information and Education for Health under the Lao Ministry of Health on Monday.
The highest number of dengue patients was reported in the Lao capital Vientiane at 13,544, while 3,855 cases were detected in Luang Namtha province, and 1,500 cases were recorded in Attapeu province.
The 21 deaths included six in Attapeu, five in Vientiane, three each in Luang Namtha and Saravan, two in Xieng Khuang, and one each in Sekong and Oudomxay province.
The Lao Ministry of Health has launched an anti-dengue campaign including raising public awareness in response to the alarmingly high number of cases in the country.
The ministry also suggested five simple measures as the most effective method of dengue control, which are being practiced by households across the region.
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 remembering to do these four tasks each week.
According to the World Health Organization, dengue fever is a mosquito-borne viral disease, with Thailand, Vietnam, 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. ■