Caribbean Broadcasting Corporation

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Officials say don’t panic after confirmed case of leprosy

January 13, 2024

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, CMC – Health officials have assured the public that there is no need to panic following the confirmation of a case of leprosy on the island.

Speaking with Deputy Chief Medical Officer Dr. Arthur Phillips said the case is being treated.

“Right now, we have one case that is being treated, and they are coming to the end of their treatment, and they have another month or two to go.”

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO),  the last reported case of leprosy in Barbados was in 2022.

The announcement that one leprosy patient was currently being treated came in response to a request to outline the country’s status concerning the disease after St Lucia reported 11 new cases of the debilitating illness, representing a 120 per cent increase from 2020 to 2023.

Health authorities have already drafted a national plan for the elimination of leprosy from the island.

The rare disfiguring disease that was once the scourge of life in Barbados 100 years ago, required sufferers to be isolated in a purpose-built leper colony.

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