National Leprosy Elimination Programme

Leprosy has struck fear in the human beings for thousands of years and the individual who have suffered its chronic course of incurable disfigurement and physical disabilities can never be calculated. It once affected every continent and it has left behind a terrifying image in history and human memory. Treatment became available only in 1940s with the introduction of Dapsone monotherapy. Since leprosy bacilli resisted to Dapsone a new treatment regimen with Multi- Drug Therapy was introduced as recommended by the WHO during the year 1981. This is well tolerated and accepted by the patients and it is highly effective. It rapidly cure patients , interrupt further transmission and therefore make elimination of the disease possible. The elimination of the disease means reducing the prevalence to below one case per 10000 population and aimed at detecting all hidden cases giving full course of treatment and thereby preventing the chance for deformity and further spread of the disease. Case detection is carried out through campaign approach by house to house search and VRC(Voluntary Reporting Centre).

Now the Leprosy Elimination Programme is integrated with general health care service and treatment facilities are available in all the health institutions free of charge. The expenses for the reconstructive surgery is reimbursed. MCR chappal is also provided free of cost to the needy patients .For the speedy implementation of various activities under the programme a District leprosy Society is functioning under the chairman ship of Collector -cum- Development Commissioner. The results of surveys conducted under Leprosy elimination program in Lakshadweep are given below.
Year Survey Cases Prevailing Rate(in '000)
1960 Rapid Health Survey by Dr. Alexander 584 31.2
1966-67 CLTRI 634 24.4
1966-68 CLTRI 634 24.4
1974 Dr.Noorudheen 720 25.4
1986 Dr.K.C.Das 426 5.63
1989-90 CLTRI 223 5.12
1991 CLTRI 129 3.09
1993-94 CLTRI 40 0.94
1997 CLTRI 69 1.5
1998 MLEC 1 42 0.75
1999 MLEC 2 54 0.9
2001 MLEC 3 15 0.27

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