Over 7 million people are currently affected by leprosy across the world. 

Although curable, many people are unable to access treatment, even though the cure is free.

We work to find, treat and rehabilitate these hidden people and promote their rights.

What is leprosy?

  • Leprosy is a Neglected Tropical Disease (NTD) which attacks the nerves 
  • The first sign of leprosy is usually a patch of discoloured numb skin
  • It's curable but left untreated it causes life-changing permanent damage to hands, feet and eyes, leading to paralysis, blindness, ulcers and amputations

Devastating impact

  • 600 people are diagnosed each day and 50 of these are children
  • Evidence shows over 3 million people are living with undiagnosed leprosy
  • Over 4 million people are living with a life-changing disability caused by leprosy

Read our FAQs to find out more


Due to misunderstanding, lack of information and incorrect beliefs, people affected by leprosy can experience severe prejudice and discrimination when they show symptoms, or when a diagnosis is confirmed.

The consequences can be devastating; people are often shunned by their community or even their own family, they may lose their livelihoods and they can even experience thoughts of suicide.

They are left to endure a lifetime of abuse, isolation and shame.

More info about prejudice

How is leprosy transmitted?

Leprosy is thought to be transmitted through nasal droplets and involves long-term contact with someone who has the disease.

How is leprosy diagnosed?

Leprosy has many different symptoms and as a result, there are varying methods used to diagnose the disease.

Find out more about how our teams work to diagnose leprosy.

How is leprosy cured?

Leprosy is completely curable through a course of multi-drug therapy (MDT) for six months or a year.

MDT is free of charge, but many affected by the disease are unaware that this cure even exists. 

We were one of the first organisations to use multi-drug therapy to treat leprosy and we were highly involved in its development. 

You can make a difference

There are over 7 million people who are in desperate need of support to overcome this disease.

Our mission is to beat leprosy – so that all cases are easily diagnosed and treated and leave no disability or prejudice.

Please help us beat leprosy – even the smallest contribution can help treat and rehabilitate people trapped by this disease.


Lives changed

The lives of many people have been changed thanks to the generosity of supporters like you.

Read the inspiring stories of just some of the people who have received our support.

Useful links