Vientiane - Dengue fever has claimed 44 lives so far this year in Laos, which is expecting one of its worst outbreaks of the mosquito-borne virus, news reports said Tuesday.
Laos' National Center for Laboratory and Epidemiology recorded at least 11,260 dengue cases from January 1 to June 23, of whom 44 died, the Vientiane Times reported.
The centre's director, Phengta Vongphachanh, predicted that this year's dengue outbreak would be worse than that of 2010, when almost 23,000 people were infected, and 46 people died.
Phengta urged the public to use mosquito nets when taking daytime naps.
The dengue virus is transmitted by the Aedes aegypti mosquito, a daytime feeder that lays its eggs in pockets of still, clean water that abound in urban areas in South-East Asia, especially during the rainy season.//DPA