Leprosy prevalence rate down from 0.69 per 10,000 population in 2014-15 to 0.45 in 2021-22: Minister

NewsDrum Desk
30 Jan 2023

New Delhi, Jan 30 (PTI) The prevalence rate of leprosy in the country has come down from 0.69 per 10,000 population in 2014-15 to 0.45 in 2021-22, Union Minister of State for Health Bharati Pravin Pawar said on Monday.


Further, the annual new case detection rate per 1,00,000 population has come down from 9.73 in 2014-15 to 5.52 in 2021-22, Pawar said at an event to observe National Anti-Leprosy Day here.

The theme of this year was "let us fight leprosy and make leprosy a history".

"India is making progress and new leprosy cases are declining year after year. With the whole of government, whole of society support, synergy and cooperation, we can achieve the target of 'Leprosy Mukt Bharat' by 2027, three years ahead of the SDG (Sustainable Development Goal)," Union Minister for Health Mansukh Mandaviya during his video address at the event.


Reiterating Mahatma Gandhi's enduring concern for people affected with leprosy, the minister noted that the concern and commitment to treat leprosy has its origin in our history.

"His vision was not only to treat them but also to mainstream them in our society. Our efforts to eliminate leprosy from this country under the National Leprosy Eradication Programme is a great tribute to his vision. We are successful in achieving prevalence rate 1 case per 10,000 population at national level in 2005. The need of the hour is consistent efforts to eliminate leprosy," Mandaviya stated.

It is a curable disease, however if it is not detected and treated at the early stage, it can cause permanent disabilities and deformities among the affected person, leading to discrimination of such persons and their family members in the community, he said.


Pawar said the leprosy programme of the country strives to detect and treat cases as early as possible, gives treatment free of cost to prevent the development of disabilities and deformities, medical rehabilitation of those with existing deformities.

The welfare allowance has been raised from Rs 8,000 to Rs 12,000 to patients for their reconstructive surgery.

Highlighting the achievements of the programme, she informed that "the prevalence rate of leprosy has come down from 0.69 per 10,000 population in 2014-15 to 0.45 in 2021-22. Further, annual new case detection rate per 100,000 population has come down from 9.73 in 2014-15 to 5.52 in 2021-22." The programme also works towards spreading awareness and reducing stigma attached with the disease.


Surveillance was also strengthened by introducing ASHA-based surveillance for leprosy suspects (ABSULS) where grassroots-level workers constantly engaged in examining and reporting suspects.

Special emphasis under the Focused Leprosy Campaign was given to areas that were difficult to access or had child cases and cases with disabilities.

"Since 2015, with the constant efforts under the National Leprosy Eradication Programme, we have been able to prevent many cases of disability due to leprosy," she added.

She also laid emphasis on the need to spread awareness on stigma connected to leprosy. PTI PLB SMN SMN