PHNOM PENH, Dec. 4 (Xinhua) -- Cambodia had reported a total of 15,233 dengue fever cases in the first 11 months this year, an increase of about 50 percent over the same period last year, a health official said on Tuesday.
"The dengue virus killed 16 people so far this year, up from only 11 deaths over the same period last year," Huy Rekol, director of the National Center for Parasitology, Entomology and Malaria Control, said. "The fatal cases occurred because parents had sent their ill children to hospitals late."
He added that parents should send their children to the nearest public hospital within 48 hours after they suspect that their kids are infected with a dengue virus.
Dengue is a viral disease transmitted by Aedes mosquitoes.
To control the outbreaks of the virus, about 300 tons of Abate (a chemical substance used to put in water pots to kill larvae) had been handed out to households this year, Rekol said.
He also appealed to the people to fill in puddles around their houses, saying that they are sources of mosquitoes.
Dengue fever causes an acute illness that usually follows symptoms such as headache, fever, exhaustion, severe muscle and joint pain, swollen glands, vomiting and rash.
In Cambodia, the peak of dengue epidemic period is in the rainy season from May to October.