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COVID-19 Emergency Vaccination Appeal

The second wave of COVID-19 in India has derailed its health system. Lepra is delivering lifesaving COVID-19 vaccinations and we urgently need your support to deliver more.

Donate now.  

Our vaccination project has begun in three Indian states: Bihar, Telengana and Andhra Pradesh, with those who are most vulnerable in the community already receiving their jabs. The aim is to vaccinate 10,500 people. 

Day by day COVID-19 infections are growing exponentially across India. The second wave has hit with greater force than any other country has seen. With over a third of a million cases of COVID-19 reported in India in the past 24 hours, there are growing concerns that both the Government and private health care system is teetering under the weight of demand. Oxygen is running short and most hospitals are beyond capacity.

Abdul Nasar, a 50-year-old leprosy patient, has been living with leprosy for 10 years and is disabled. He travelled to his nearest government hospital and stayed overnight waiting for 3 days. He was then turned away. Abdul says, “They want us to register on the government portal, but I cannot understand it. I am afraid. I am worried I will not receive my vaccination.”

Please donate today, and help Lepra to plug the gap in India's collapsing health system, vulnerable people urgently need our help! 

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Latest news

June 25 2021 - By the end of next week, we will be approaching 15,000 vaccinated in India alone. In Bangladesh, government controls on obtaining the vaccine have delayed the 2,000 vulnerable we wanted to vaccinate. 

May 24 2021 - Despite an unprecedented surge in COVID-19 cases in India causing a major threat to its health system, vaccination drives in most states have actually been slowed and many institutions told to stop due to national vaccine supply shortages. Lepra, however, is determined to deliver its plan for the vaccination of over 10,000 people affected by leprosy in the states of Bihar, Telengana and Andhra Pradesh.

Whilst the supply of vaccines remains a serious and ongoing issue, Lepra has been driving forward with its vaccination awareness raising programme. With awareness levels extraordinarily low in rural communities coupled with visibly high levels of vaccination fear, careful and considered awareness raising will be a critical component to the uptake of the vaccine in rural communities in the weeks and months to come.  Using our self-help self-care groups already embedded within local communities, Lepra is a valuable strategic partner working tirelessly to support the COVID-19 vaccination effort, whilst continuing to offer PCR testing.

Mission Oxygen, a group of concerned individuals who aim to alleviate the current oxygen crisis, have requested Lepra's help in delivering oxygen concentrators to the local hospitals that we work with. Read more.

As at Friday May 7 2021, Lepra is operating its emergency vaccination programme across three Indian states: Bihar, Telangana, and Andhra Pradesh. 

Our aim is to reach and vaccinate the most vulnerable, of which leprosy sufferers account for approximately 80%. As it stands, people affected by leprosy are being side-lined due to logistical and prejudicial issues. 

Our COVID-19 testing programme, which has been running out of the Blue Peter Public Health and Research Centre in Hyderaband, India since summer 2020, has been reporting a staggering 40% positive test result rate. 

Leprosy and lymphatic filariasis remain our focus, but we are doing all that we can with the wider global COVID-19 situation as well. We sent information for inclusion in the WHO’s meeting on global COVID vaccination roll-out last week, which was used to demonstrate the need to prioritise the vulnerable.