Letters Response

J Barbosa and colleagues reply to Diana N J Lockwood and colleagues

BMJ 2014; 348 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.g2114 (Published 19 March 2014) Cite this as: BMJ 2014;348:g2114
  1. J Barbosa, secretário de vigilância em saúde1,
  2. S Barua, team leader2,
  3. D Daumerie, project manager, neglected tropical diseases, neglected tropical diseases control3,
  4. H Nakatani, assistant director-general3,
  5. S Noordeen, former director, WHO Leprosy Elimination Programme4,
  6. R Castália, secretaria de vigilância em saúde, Departamento de Vigilância Epidemiologica1
  1. 1Ministério da Saúde, Brasilia, Brazil
  2. 2Global Leprosy Programme, WHO South East Asia Regional Office, Mahatma Gandhi Marg, New Delhi, India
  3. 3HIV/AIDS, TB, Malaria and Neglected Tropical Diseases (HTM), World Health Organization, 1211 Geneva 27, Switzerland
  4. 4Chennai, India
  1. daumeried{at}who.int

We wish to clarify some of the points raised in Diana N J Lockwood and colleagues’ article on the hazards of setting targets to eliminate disease with particular reference to leprosy.1

We disagree with the view that the leprosy elimination target is harmful, given the robust evidence available and the active commitment of affected countries and the global community.

Leprosy reached its current low prevalence and low number of new cases as a result of two major developments. These were the introduction of World Health Organization multidrug therapy in 1981 and the commitment of leprosy endemic countries in 1991 (World Health Assembly resolution 44.9) to eliminating leprosy as a …

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