This approach, using a single antibiotic given to contacts of new patients, is called ‘post-exposure prophylaxis’ (PEP). PEP has been shown to reduce their risk of developing leprosy very significantly. With this WHO endorsement, this method is now officially available to ministries of health across the globe. It signals a new era: leprosy as a preventable disease!
Netherlands Leprosy Relief (NLR) is proud to have been at the forefront of the development of this approach. WHO recognises the evidence produced by PEP programme of NLR and partners. We expect that that PEP will now be implemented by many more leprosy-endemic countries.
Read here the summary of the WHO Guidelines for the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of leprosy.