In 2022, the World Mosquito Program began work in Vientiane, the capital of Laos, to combat the growing threat of mosquito-borne diseases.
Dengue is endemic in Laos, with cases increasing during the warmer and wetter months. The last major epidemic in 2019 resulted in 39,091 dengue cases, with 10,813 in Vientiane alone. Dengue epidemics usually peak between May and October. The districts of Chanthabouly and Xaysettha in the capital of Vientiane have been identified as high priority areas due to their high dengue burden.
The approach is not an emergency measure but is a long term, self-sustaining solution to significantly reduce the risk of future outbreaks in high-risk areas. WMP's Wolbachia method is also compatible with other methods such as insecticides and vaccines.
In our other project sites, long-term monitoring shows that Wolbachia is self-sustaining at high levels in our international project sites up to eight years after release. In areas where high levels of Wolbachia are present, we have not seen any dengue outbreaks.
The World Mosquito Program will be working in two districts in Vientiane, the capital of Laos, to address the threat of mosquito-borne diseases.