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19 dead in Bolivia dengue outbreak, 31,000 affected

LA PAZ, Bolivia (AFP)--In Bolivia's worst national outbreak in a decade, 19 people have died from dengue fever since January and 31,000 people have been affected, official estimates showed Thursday.

Twelve people died from the disease in the tropical eastern region of Santa Cruz, three others died in central Bolivia, two others in the Andean west and one in the capital city of La Paz, according to an official toll cited by ATB television.

A Bolivian national died on arriving in neighboring Peru, and health minister Ramiro Tapia said one additional death brought the overall death toll to 19.

A total of 30,870 dengue cases have been counted, 71% of them in Santa Cruz, the region most affected by the outbreak. Authorities have also declared a health emergency in the Beni, Pando and Cochabamba provinces. More than 15,000 troops have been mobilized to assist health teams.

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