Lao authorities say for the first six months of this year alone, 39 people died of AIDS and 180 people were diagnosed with HIV/AIDS infection.
1,102 are presently known to be HIV/AIDS positive. The largest number of infection is in the province of Savannakhet, where the sex industry has grown.
But officials fear the number of deaths and infections are higher, because not very many high-risk people were tested.
Since 1990, less than 20,000 people have come forward to be tested.