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28.07.2005 Health

Asante-Akim South leads in leprosy cases in Ashanti

By GNA

Juaso (Ash), July 28, GNA- The Asante-Akim South District has been described as the most endemic area in leprosy cases in the Ashanti Region as an average of 20 cases had been recorded annually in the area in the last three years.

With its population a little above 114,000, the situation in the district exceeds the World Health Organisation's (WHO) designated, one per 10,000 cases concept.

Dr Franklin Asiedu-Bekoe, the District Director of Health Services said these in an interview with the GNA at Juaso. He said 70 cases were initially recorded out of which 48 were confirmed after experts thoroughly diagnosed those identified. Dr Asiedu-Bekoe said since the disease was airborne and its infection rate very high, the health directorate was working to expand the case search by training more Community-Based Surveillance Volunteers (CBSV), adding that, the case search will be conducted twice every year. He said leprosy was not a disease of the past and cautioned people to seek early treatment from the nearest health facility in case of a patch on the skin.

Communities, where the disease is common are Foase, Obogu, Komeso and Banka.

Leprosy, according to the WHO, is a disease that can be eliminated but its prevalence in the district has rendered it endemic, hence the district health directorate is making strenuous efforts to bring the situation under control.

Consequently, the directorate in May, this year, embarked upon case search in a bid to identify those suffering from the disease so that the could seek medical attention. 28 July 5

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