DILI, 26 january 2022 (TATOLI) – The Director of the Non-Governmental Organization of Leprosy Mission Timor-Leste (LMTL), Afliana Lisnahan dos Reis, revealed that LMTL had been committed to giving priority to carrying out early diagnosis of leprosy and contact tracing to eliminate leprosy in Timor-Leste by 2035.
“We prioritize contact tracing and the early detection to prevent transmission of leprosy in the communities. According to LMTL’s prediction, leprosy will no longer exist in 2035,” Reis told TATOLI, in Dili, on wednesday.
She said that working in partnership with all entities, namely the Ministry of Health (MoH), the World Health Organization (WHO), and the organization of persons with disabilities in Timor-Leste can lead to eliminating leprosy in the country.
Reis stressed that LMTL would continue to raise awareness about this disease to guarantee the rights of all people with leprosy, especially those with disabilities.
In addition, Reis said that Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) is going to support MLTL this year with the financial support of AUD$250.000.
Reis said the money aimed to support MoH’s program of early diagnosis of leprosy and contact tracing to prevent the transmission of the disease in the country.
Reis was pleased with the Government’s program to integrate the leprosy unit into Timor-Leste’s Family Health Program.
MoH recorded, last year, 150 cases of leprosy in eight municipalities and the Special Administrative Region of Oé-Cusse Ambeno (RAEOA), revealed the Head of the Neglected Tropical Diseases Program (NTD) of the Ministry of Health (MOH) José Liu Fernandes.
He said of the 150 cases, 30 were detected in Baucau, 28 in Dili, 19 in Covalima, 18 in Ainaro, 17 in Manatuto, 15 in RAEOA, seven in Liquiçá, two in Lautém and one in Viqueque.
Since 2000, the Ministry of Health has registered more than 5.000 cases of leprosy in Timor-Leste.
Related news:MoH detects 150 people with leprosy in 2021
Journalist: Filomeno Martins
Editor: Rafy Belo