Nepal | January 18, 2021

Leprosy cases rising despite govt’s efforts

Himalayan News Service
Share Now:
  • 5,922 cases of leprosy were recorded in the fiscal 2016-17

Kathmandu, January 21

Despite government efforts, the number of leprosy patients has been constantly rising in the country for the past two years.

As per data provided by Leprosy Control Division, there were 5,922 leprosy patients in the country in the fiscal 2016-17, up from 5,641 in the fiscal 2015-16. In the fiscal 2014-15, the number stood at 5,477.

Lack of awareness, poor personal hygiene and sanitation and low economic status of the people are mainly to blame for the increasing number of leprosy patients. “People are not aware of skin-related diseases and its mode of transmission. Social stigma attached to leprosy is still prevalent in the country and that is why people hide the disease,” said Mohammad Saud, director at Leprosy Control Division.

“People visit hospitals when the disease gets too severe,” said Saud. The country is set to observe an awareness week starting January 21 with the aim of raising public awareness on the disease and its mode of transmission.

The government plans to educate people about the disease through media campaigns and awareness programmes. It has already deployed a team of health practitioners to detect leprosy cases in four leprosy-affected districts —  Kailali, Kapilvastu, Rupandehi and Nawalparasi.

Similarly the government has allocated a budget of Rs 30 lakhs for 14 leprosy-affected districts to combat the disease.

The country was declared leprosy-free in 2010. However, people are still suffering from the disease. Of the 22 leprosy-affected districts of the country, 18 are in the Tarai region that are worst-hit by the disease.

Leprosy is a chronic disease caused by a slow multiplying bacillus, Mycobacterium leprae. Untreated, leprosy can cause progressive and permanent damage to skin, limbs, eyes and nerves. Leprosy is transmitted via droplets from nose and mouth.

A version of this article appears in print on January 22, 2018 of The Himalayan Times.

Follow The Himalayan Times on Twitter and Facebook

Recommended Stories:

More from The Himalayan Times:

319 Nepalis living abroad have succumbed to Covid-19 thus far: NRNA

KATHMANDU: Two more Nepalis living abroad died from coronavirus infection in the past week. According to Non-Resident Nepali Association (NRNA), one person passed away in London while the other one died in South Africa. According to the Health Committee under NRNA, with the latest fatalities, Read More...

clouds above singhadarbar due to low-pressure system

Weather to remain cloudy for a few more days

KATHMANDU: Weather has been partly to generally cloudy in some places of the country due to influence of low pressure system developed in northern Bangladesh and surrounding areas. Senior meteorologist at the Department of Hydrology and Meteorology, Nirajan Sapkota, shared that a completely clea Read More...

Nepal Covid Update: 266 new cases, 400 recovered, five deaths on Sunday

KATHMANDU: Nepal’s Health Ministry shared the latest updates on coronavirus contagion from across the country. Till date, 2,012,452 tests through Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) method have been carried out wherein 3,508 tests were performed in the last 24 hours. Read Also: Kathmandu Valley Read More...

Leach takes five wickets as nervous England near victory

GALLE: Left-arm spinner Jack Leach took five wickets as England edged towards victory over Sri Lanka in the first test in Galle, but they made a nervous start to their pursuit of a modest target of 74 and closed day four on 38 for three on Sunday. Jonny Bairstow (11 not out) and debutant Dan Read More...

Leipzig miss out on top spot with 2-2 draw at Wolfsburg

WOLFSBURG: RB Leipzig missed the chance to go top of the Bundesliga after drawing 2-2 at VfL Wolfsburg on Saturday to stay a point behind leaders Bayern Munich. Champions League club Leipzig have now managed just one point from their last two league matches, having conceded five goals in them c Read More...

Leicester march on, Chelsea end slump

LONDON: Leicester City maintained their impressive form as a 2-0 home win against Southampton extended their unbeaten Premier League run to five games to lift them into second place on Saturday. Goals from James Maddison and Harvey Barnes saw off the Saints as Leicester moved above champions Liv Read More...

Worldwide coronavirus cases cross 93.86 million, death toll at 2,012,869

LONDON: More than 93.86 million people have been reported to be infected by the novel coronavirus globally and 2,012,869​ have died, according to a Reuters tally. Infections have been reported in more than 210 countries and territories since the first cases were identified in China in December Read More...

In pics: A day in the lives of STIDH health-workers

KATHMANDU: Teku-based Sukraraaj Tropical and Infectious Disease Hospital (STIDH) which was established as centre for treating COVID-19 cases has been successfully providing quality care to the patients. Following the detection of the virus in country around ten months ago, the government had dec Read More...