It is with great pleasure and humility, we invite you to the first National Leprosy Conference, 2017.
The event is an attempt to brace the various new innovations introduced in National Leprosy Eradication Programme, India. Hence the theme for the NLC -2017 is "Accelerating towards leprosy free India through Innovative Approaches", which will be held from 5th to 7th December, 2017, in New Delhi, with objectives to:
- Share the best practices within and outside the country.
- Enhance Programme Advocacy.
- Recognise and encourage efforts of leprosy work force.
- Acquire inputs for Effective implementation of the programme.
- Establish linkages among various national-international partners.
- Learn Innovations.
Leprosy is a chronic infectious disease traced back thousands of years that has stigmatized people affected since ancient times until now. This crippling disease does not affect lives of a person affected by leprosy (PAL) only but whole family of PAL. Govt. of India (GoI) started National Leprosy Control Programme in 1955, which was further modified to National Leprosy Eradication Programme (NLEP) in 1983 with objective to arrest the disease activity in all the known cases of leprosy. Since then, remarkable progress has been achieved in reducing the disease burden in India. The country achieved the goal of leprosy elimination i.e., prevalence rate < 1/ 10000 population at the National level in December 2005.
Although the Elimination of Leprosy at National level has been achieved in India, it is still contributing around 60% of new cases being detected annually worldwide. Pockets of high endemicity are still present and ongoing disease transmission is taking place.
Hence, in order to address the issues being faced by the programme, NLEP, India witnessed the successful implementation of several innovations i.e., introduction of three pronged strategy under NLEP i.e., i) Leprosy Case Detection Campaign (specific for high endemic districts), ii) Focused Leprosy Campaign (for hot spots i.e., rural and urban areas where grade II disability is detected), iii) Special plan for hard to reach areas. Further, to make a dent on the prevalent stigma against leprosy and to reach village level, Sparsh Leprosy Awareness Campaign on the Anti Leprosy Day i.e., 30th January, 2017 was introduced first time, to give boost to the voluntary reporting. Furthermore, in order to cut the transmission chain of disease in the community, chemoprophylaxis administration was followed to the contacts of cases detected in the districts where LCDC was conducted. In addition, various other initiatives taken are use of GIS mapping, publication of NLEP Newsletter, launch of Nikusth a web based reporting system for leprosy cases and introduction of ASHA based Surveillance for Leprosy Suspects (ABSULS) etc.
There is a need to share findings of these initiatives including best practices and challenges, to improve the quality of these initiatives. Hence, NLC-2017 which will be attended by National and International participants including the scientists, academicians, sociologists, field level worker with work experience in Leprosy, representatives fromGovernment health system and partner organizations i.e., WHO, ILEP, APAL and NGOs, is an opportunity to share their experiences, discuss challenges & barriers and derive recommendations for the improvement of NLEP and Person Affected by Leprosy.
The active participation and contribution of you is most desirous in various scientific sessions of this conference. Join the event and help us to achieve the vision of the programmei.e., "Leprosy Free India", for which we have to go a long way.
We assure you of the best hospitality and high quality discussions during the sessions in the conference. You are also requested to give your valuable suggestions / ideas for the conference.
Please grace the occasion with your warm presence.
Dr. Anil Kumar
Chairman, Organising Committee