Brazil Wants to End Leprosy by 2010. Disease Affects 38,000 a Year

The World Health Organization’s (WHO) honorary ambassador for the Elimination of Hansen’s Disease, Yohei Sasakawa, and the Brazilian Minister of Health, Agenor Àlvares, discussed ways to erradicate this endemic disease, which is also known as leprosy.

In Brazil, which is second only to India in the incidence of Hansen’s disease, the ministry identified 38,410 cases last year.

Sasakawa is the founder of the Nippon Foundation, an organization that buys medications to treat the disease and donates them to the WHO for distribution.

According to the ministry’s director of Epidemiological Surveillance, Expedito Luna, Brazil has made substantial progress in combatting Hansen’s disease in the past two years, but much remains to be done, especially in the North and Northeast regions. The goal is to eliminate the disease by 2010.

"Our policy is to expand the network of services that can provide diagnosis and treatment in order to facilitate people’s access to the necessary care," Luna explained, adding that the Family Agents and Community Health Agents programs are also enlisted to increase the capacity to detect cases "and submit them to treatment, avoiding further infection."

With an average of 1.5 cases in every 10 thousand inhabitants, through the program Brazil can reduce this number to less than 1 case in every 10 thousand inhabitants.

Luna also pointed out that, besides prejudice, the chief obstacle to combatting the disease is the lack of specialized physicians. "Specialists are very rare nowadays. Doctors are reluctant and prejudiced when it comes to assuming responsibility for treating cases."

Agência Brasil


  • Show Comments (0)

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

comment *

  • name *

  • email *

  • website *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


You May Also Like

Iraq Has Plenty of Money and Wishes to Do Business with Brazil

The Kurdistan DBX Trade Show began Tuesday, November 11, in Suleimaniya, in Northern Iraq, ...

Brazilian Airline TAM

90,000 Plus Passengers in One Day Give Brazil’s TAM a New Record

Brazil's airline leader TAM announced that it carried a record 91,000 passengers on its ...

The poisonous tree frog found in the Brazilian Amazon

Brazil’s Poisonous Tree Frog Vaccine Hasn’t Made Indians Immune to Foreign Greed

Used for centuries as a natural disease prevention and physical stimulant, an Amazonian tree ...

Housing and Agribusiness Boost Bank Credit by 15% in 2009 in Brazil

In Brazil, the volume of bank credit operations totaled 1.389 trillion Brazilian reais (US$ ...

Brazil Deploys 9,000 Men from Armed Forces to Dissuade Foreign Threat

Brazil’s Armed Forces have started a major deployment along its borders with Uruguay, Argentina, ...


A song and the news Here I am in Atlanta, Georgia, starting a Master’s ...

Brazil and Uruguay Ready to Forgo Dollar and Do Business in Real and Peso

Brazil and Uruguay have plans to have bilateral trade operations in their respective local ...

Obama Hasn’t Kept Promises on Latin America, Says Brazil’s Lula

Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, the president of Brazil, claims that his American counterpart, ...

Will Debt-Ridden Brazil Follow Argentina’s Lead?

With the successful termination of Argentina’s debt swap offer on February 25, President Kirchner’s ...

Looking for Love

Documents required: By Janaina Gimael The Secretaria de Assistência Social (Social Assistance Department), an ...