Leprosy is curable and if diagnosed and treated at an early stage long term complications can be prevented. However, many people affected by leprosy are unable to access quality healthcare which can lead to lifelong disabilities. Stigma discourages people from seeking timely treatment. There is a high degree of variation in the availability and utilization of health services in different parts of the country. Government hospitals provide Multi Drug Therapy but not other necessary services.
To reduce leprosy burden and encourage early detection it is necessary to make healthcare accessible. It is essential to have specialized leprosy care available, especially in rural and remote areas. Counseling of the patients and families helps them in dealing with the trauma of stigma and acceptance and social integration of the patients.
TLMTI has 14 Government of India recognized specialized leprosy referral centers. They provide quality secondary and tertiary level leprosy care including provision of multi drug therapy, management of reactions and neuritis, ulcer care, care of insensitive limbs/feet/hands, specialized disability assessment, correction of deformities and reconstructive surgery, occupational and physiotherapy, aids and appliances such as splints, orthosis and prosthesis, counseling, training in prevention of further disability, treatment of eye problems and general health.
Hospitals also extend their medical services to other disadvantaged groups in the local community. This provides an opportunity for members of the local community to interact with people affected by leprosy and helps in the reduction of stigma.
TLMTI has well trained medical staff with decades of experience in treating leprosy and other leprosy related issues. Every hospital has trained counselors to help patients, their families and communities in understanding and accepting the disease and people affected by it. Counselors also provide career guidance to youth with disability towards vocational training and job opportunities.
Support to NLEP
TLMTI through the International Federation of Anti Leprosy Associations, India (ILEP, India) supports the National Leprosy Eradication Programme (NLEP) at the national and State levels in the planning, execution and monitoring of the programme. It supports the government in building capacity of government staff and provides technical support to them.
Snehalayas (Care Homes) provide residential care, medical treatment, and social support and in a way protection, for the elderly people adversely affected by leprosy, with no means of livelihood. They have no one to look after them and nowhere else to go. Here the focus is for the residents of the Snehalaya having a dignified and improved quality of life.
TLMTI has five Snehalayas that work towards enhancing the quality of life of the residents by providing geriatric care, engaging residents in recreational activities, counseling them, providing spiritual support, prevention of disability (POD) among the residents and rehabilitation for optimal physical, psychological and social functioning.
We work with individuals and communities disadvantaged by leprosy, irrespective of caste, creed and religion, by addressing their physical, mental, social and spiritual needs to uphold human dignity and eradicate leprosy.