Official Name Change of WHO Leprosy Elimination Program sign now

This is the official petition of DocNOW Media to request an official change of title for the World Health Organization's (WHO) Leprosy Elimination Program. The request is to have this program's name changed to Leprosy Control Program to create a higher global awareness of the number of newly reported and ongoing leprosy cases worldwide.

According to the WHO website:

In 1991 WHO's governing body, the World Health Assembly (WHA) passed a resolution to eliminate leprosy as a public health problem by the year 2000. Elimination of leprosy as a public health problem is defined as a prevalence rate of less than one case per 10 000 persons. The target was achieved on time and the widespread use of MDT reduced the disease burden dramatically.

- (http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs101/en/index.html)

This simply states that the WHO, end every country which openly participates in their program, will consider Leprosy eliminated, per WHO standards, if less than 1 in every 10,000 of the country's population has Leprosy.

In a country like India, with a population of over 1,000,000 people, there can be 100,000 new cases every year and it still falls under the amount decided by the WHO.

The number of newly reported cases in India in 2008 was 137,000. This is 29,000 MORE cases than were discovered when the first survey was conducted in India in 1871-72. India announced that they eliminated leprosy as a national health concern on December 21, 2005.*

This example is true for countries all over the world with over 140 countries reporting cases of leprosy to the WHO in 2010**

The dictionary defines elimination as :

to remove or get rid of, esp. as being in some way undesirable: to eliminate risks; to eliminate hunger, to eradicate or kill.

We are asking that, to eliminate misunderstanding in both educated and uneducated areas alike, the WHO agree to change the name of their program to the much more appropriate Leprosy Control Program. This will promote further understanding of this disease across the planet and educate a broader spectrum of people. Although the WHO does good all over the world, their selection of wording here is only further misguiding the public about the world's already most misunderstood disease.

* Facts taken from the 2008 WHO Indias publication Elimination of Leprosy as a Public Health Problem in India
** 2010 First Quarter WHO World Leprosy Record Report

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Melisa FarleyBy:
Politics and GovernmentIn:
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WHO

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