Agency: First Partners
Brand: Sasakawa India Leprosy Foundation
India emerges as the global capital of new cases of leprosy; spotlight on more talked about diseases like HIV & Cancer puts leprosy eradication agenda on the backburner.
Leprosy is a chronic infectious disease which mainly affects the skin, the peripheral nerves, mucosa of the upper respiratory tract, and the eyes. Leprosy is only infectious with prolonged exposure. The disease is totally treatable if detected at the right time. While leprosy has been eradicated from many parts of the world, India unfortunately continues to record the highest number of annual new leprosy cases in the world (63%), followed by Brazil and Indonesia.
In the recent years, the focus of the Government health planners has been taken over by more talked about diseases like first HIV and now Cancer, with diseases like leprosy taking a backseat. New infections continue in India because of poor detection of the disease. Detection of people living with leprosy becomes a challenge because of the social stigma and discrimination accorded to leprosy patients.