It’s now a major concern that people in Xayaboury may be at more risk of dengue fever due to flooding in the province after continued flooding in many northern areas of the country.
Towns in the north have become increasingly vulnerable to the spread of dengue after receiving a large amount of rainfall across the region this month.
A provincial health specialist, Mr. Somneuk Phonlath, told Vientiane Times on Tuesday that they tend to see more cases of dengue in the province after bigger rainfalls and that they would not be surprised to see more cases of dengue because of the rain.
But people in Xayaboury are currently living with increased risk of the disease after six more cases of dengue have been reported this month.
“We’re afraid dengue may spread in Xayaboury if some people return to their homes with dengue after going to visit or work in other provinces especially those areas alongside rivers that have risen because of the rain,” Mr. Somneuk said.
As the disease is transmitted by mosquitoes, it is able to spread throughout the province quickly when rains increase the insect’s breeding sites.
But with six more cases of the disease being found, bringing the total number of cases reported in the province to nine, it has still yet to be considered an outbreak.
Luang Prabang and Oudomxay provinces are also at increased risk to the spread of the disease because of their many drainage systems along asphalt roads collecting stagnant water.
Xayaboury province has had its experiences with the disease as an outbreak from dengue was reported in 2013.
Severe dengue is a leading cause of serious illness and death among children in some Asian and Latin American countries. Symptoms of those diagnosed with the illness may include a high fever, headache, vomiting, muscle and joint pains.
In recent years, based on the Vientiane Health Department, the most virulent outbreaks of dengue have been in the months of June and July but typically dengue is contracted in the months from January to September or October which mark the end of the rainy season.
The department has recorded dengue cases in the months from October to December only very occasionally.
So far this year more than 2,000 cases of dengue fever have been recorded around the country and of that figure, eight people have reportedly died of which six deaths have been recorded in Champassak province, one in Saravan province and one in Borikhamxay.
Last year there were a total of 1,950 dengue cases nationwide but no deaths recorded.
Source: Vientiane Times