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The Ministry of Public Health will accelerate its agenda of eliminating of leprosy from Thailand by ramping up its screening measures.
The ministry’s project is entitled “The campaign to search for leprosy patients.” The project is meant to honor the wishes of His Majesty the King and commemorate His Majesty’s 70-year reign.
The ministry will accelerate the search for new patients for treatment, before the disease results disability. The project aims to reduce new cases to no more than 100 patients and no more than 20 new persons with disabilities due to leprosy.
Thailand has been endorsed by the World Health Organization for its effectiveness in consistently reducing the number of new patients since 1994. As of 2014, a total of 208 new cases were discovered, of which 31 patients had notable disabilities due to their late treatment. The ministry suspects that there are still people suffering from leprosy that have gone undiagnosed.
The initiation of the ASEAN Economic Community has stoked concerns that Thailand could see an influx of foreigners infected with leprosy. Therefore, the Ministry of Health has intensified its preventative measures to cover all sectors.