COVID-19 Emergency Response Working Groups
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Partnership formed three emergency response working groups:
Working Group 1: Leprosy Emergency Operations Committee (LEOC)
The LEOC was chaired by Ms. Arielle Cavaliero (Novartis) and Dr. Benedict Quao (Leprosy Program Manager, Ghana), and included WHO’s Global Leprosy Program and others working directly in the supply chain for multi-drug therapy (MDT). This group addressed issues in the supply of drugs for the treatment of leprosy and leprosy reactions, and other forms of care such as wound care, disability care, and social care, and supported the work of National Leprosy Programmes.
Working Group 2: Emergency Advocacy for Persons Affected
The Emergency Advocacy for Persons Affected Working Group was chaired by Dr. Alice Cruz (U.N. Rapporteur for Persons Affected and their Families) and Mr. Amar Timulsina (President of IDEA Nepal). This working group led a global advocacy campaign so that no patients were left behind. This group worked with persons affected to gather information on their needs during the pandemic and share information about government and NGO responses to those needs.
Working Group 3: Post COVID-19
The Post COVID-19 Working Group was chaired by Mr. Geoff Warne (ILEP CEO) and Dr. Takahiro Nanri (Executive Director, Sasakawa Health Foundation). This group discussed future health scenarios to develop a path forward for the leprosy community in a post-COVID world.