On 23 June 2022, Jimmy Innes (Lepra CEO) signed the Kigali Declaration, endorsing the global goal of ending neglected tropical diseases (NTDs).
What is the Kigali Declaration?
The Kigali Declaration is a global political declaration that pro-actively commits to ending neglected tropical diseases. Through utilising political will, building cross-community collaboration, investing in research and resources, and with a united approach to combating NTDs, we can meet the sustainable development goals and WHO NTD 2030 road map targets.
The Kigali Declaration serves the 1.7 billion people who are adversely affected by neglected tropical diseases and acknowledges that these diseases stem from poverty and inequity. By signing the declaration, we are committed to helping relieve suffering, decreasing the health-related drivers of poverty, reducing disability and discrimination, and improving mental wellbeing and inclusion in society.
What role will Lepra play?
Lepra remains committed to our goals set out nearly 100 years ago.
We will support people affected by leprosy through prevention, diagnosis, disability aids, and mental health support. We will also continue our strong partnerships with regional and national governments to ensure that those affected have access to reconstructive surgery, multi-drug therapy, eye care and physiotherapy.
Lepra will also continue to help people affected by lymphatic filariasis (LF) through diagnosis, self-care groups, and health education programmes. Lepra supports, enables, and facilitates those affected by lymphatic filariasis and leprosy.
We will continue to collaborate with governments and organisations, ensuring the common goal of making leprosy and LF diseases of little or no consequence.
In signing the agreement, Jimmy Innes said,
“1.7 billion people in the world are affected by Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTDs), including leprosy and lymphatic filariasis. In the last two years of pandemic, many cases – maybe as many as 50% – have gone undiagnosed or untreated. As the world aims to build back better from COVID-19, we have to urgently address this backlog. It is going to take renewed commitment and accelerated action by governments, donors and civil society – and this is why Lepra is delighted to sign the Kigali Declaration. We commit to do all we can to accelerate our efforts to support people who are affected by leprosy and lymphatic filariasis.”
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