Early identification is key to reaching the goal of zero transmission. FAIRMED India believes in it and does practice identifying the people affected by leprosy at an early stage. FAIRMED India initiated community-based prevention of impairment and disability (POID) projects in the states of Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtra. The key strategies adopted are:-
- FAIRMED India follows a twin-track approach, working with the community on the one hand and the other hand with the service providers. This helped us bridge gaps between these two important stakeholders.
- Awareness and health education to the community on leprosy
- Capacity building of the health care staff with a specific focus on ASHA and other community health workers.
- Capacity building of the people affected by leprosy
- Ensuring the availability of services at the health care facilities thereby focussing on health systems strengthening (HSS).
- Forging partnerships with other Government Departments including the Disability Affairs Department, District Rural Development Office, & National Blind Control Program (NBCP).
- Partnership and collaboration with the national, state, and district-level leprosy offices for smooth service delivery.
Although there are efforts from both the government and non-government health service providers, there are still challenges in achieving the goal
- Leprosy is not accorded priority when compared to other National programs including immunization & maternal & child health program.
- Health seeking behaviour of people
- Stigma and Discrimination on leprosy in the community prevent people from openly seeking treatment