Philippine Leprosy Mission, Inc http://leprosy.org.ph Welcome to the official website of the Philippine Leprosy Mission Thu, 14 Apr 2016 08:58:44 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.5.11 Dazel’s work against stigma & discrimination http://leprosy.org.ph/2016/04/14/dazels-work-against-stigma-discrimination/ Thu, 14 Apr 2016 08:47:33 +0000 http://leprosy.org.ph/?p=628 photo Dazelle’s first appearance in DZMM Teleradyo’s Magandang Gabi Dok. (in photo L-R: Former PLM Staff Lorna Lumiaoan, Dr. Belen Dofitas-PLM Pres., Hosts Nina Corpuz & Dr. Luisa Puyat of DZMM Teleradyo).

 

Ako si Dazelle    …sana huwag kayo lumayo kahit malaman nyo na nagkasakit ako ng leprosy.

Noong una kong makita ang mga namumuting marka sa iba’t-ibang bahagi ng aking katawan, kinabahan ako at nagpunta ako agad sa dermatologist.  Agad naman akong pina-biopsy ng doctor at nakita na positibo ako sa sa sakit na leprosy. Mula noon hindi na ako nakapagtrabaho dahil mahina ang aking katawan at kailangan ko ng mahabang panahon na gamutan.

Natuwa ako na may gamot na pala para sa leprosy kaya lang nagpupuyos ang aking kalooban na tanggapin ang aking sakit dahil ako mismo ay natakot na layuan ako ng aking mga kaibigan.  Mas lalo akong nahirapan sa kalagayan ko ng ako ay magkaroon ng “lepra reaction” pagkatapos ng ilang buwan kong paggagamot ng MDT (Multidrug Theraphy). Nakaranas ako ng sobrang sakit at mga sugat sa balat. Agad akong humingi ng tulong sa Philippine General Hospital. Doon ko nakilala ang iba pang nagkasakit ng leprosy dahil may grupo silang UP-PGH Hansen’s Club (isang support group na tinutulungan ng Philippine Leprosy Mission, Inc. (PLM).  Ang PLM ang nagbigay ng pambili ng gamot at bitamina para malabanan ko ang lepra reaction at sila din ang nagbigay ng pagkakataon na maipagpatuloy ko ang aking pag-aaral.  Natulungan nila akong gumaling sa aking pisikal, emosyonal at spiritual na sakit.

Ngayon, wala na akong leprosy.  Unti-unti na nawawala ang bakas/peklat na dulot ng sakit.  Malapit na din akong matapos sa aking kurso na office Management Technology sa Polytechnic University of the Philippines-Paranaque. At bilang pasasalamat sa kabutihang natanggap ko ay tumutulong akong ipaalam sa lahat na may lunas na sa leprosy at dapat isulong na maalis ang stigma at diskriminasyon sa mga taong nagkasakit nito. Kami din po ay may karapatang mamuhay ng normal at maging prodaktibong miyembro ng ating kumunidad.

Hindi magbabago ang aking pananaw sa aking sarili at sakit na leprosy kung walang mga taong tulad nyo na tumulong sa akin.  Dahil patuloy na  nagtatago ang taong may sakit o nagkasakit ng leprosy, malaki pa po ang aming gawain. Kailangan po namin ang inyong patuloy na supporta at pang-unawa.

Nagpapasalamat,

Dazelle Ann

 

 

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Partners in Leprosy Action, one of top 25 finalists of SIHI http://leprosy.org.ph/2015/06/09/partners-in-leprosy-action-one-of-top-25-finalists-of-sihi/ http://leprosy.org.ph/2015/06/09/partners-in-leprosy-action-one-of-top-25-finalists-of-sihi/#comments Tue, 09 Jun 2015 05:45:31 +0000 http://leprosy.org.ph/?p=622 The Philippine Leprosy Mission’s initiative, Partners in Leprosy

Action (PILA) was selected as one of the final 25 Social Innovation in Health Initiative (SIHI) cases.

The 25 selected initiatives present high impact solutions that have been able to improve the care delivered to people affected by neglected tropical and infectious diseases.

The SIHI is a collaboration of the University of Cape Town and the University of Oxford, with technical and financial support from the Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases (TDR) at the World Health Organization.”

You can view the profile of PILA in the SIHI website (link below)

healthinnovationproject.org/partners-in-leprosy-action-pila/

 

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UNTV’s Good Morning Kuya: Understanding Leprosy http://leprosy.org.ph/2014/03/01/untvs-good-morning-kuya-understanding-leprosy/ Sat, 01 Mar 2014 04:24:16 +0000 http://leprosy.org.ph/?p=560 February 11, 2014

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LEPROSY PREVENTION AND CONTROL WEEK http://leprosy.org.ph/2014/02/17/leprosy-control-week/ http://leprosy.org.ph/2014/02/17/leprosy-control-week/#comments Mon, 17 Feb 2014 07:25:35 +0000 http://leprosy.org.ph/?p=550 The Department of Health, declared the third (3rd) week of February of every year as Leprosy Prevention and Control Week. To observe this occasion, the Philippine Leprosy Mission will promote the importance of skin health and encourage the public with skin problems to consult at the local health centers.  PLM will also conduct free skin consultations (for any skin ailments) in the following areas:

February 20, 2014 (Thursday) – Brgy. Tatalon, Quezon City

February 21, 2014 (Friday) – Brgy. Maligaya, Fairview, Quezon City

February 22 (Saturday) Brgy Lalawigan, Samal, Bataan

Dermatologists from St. Luke’s Medical Center, Philippine General Hospital and East Avenue Medical Center will participate in the said free skin consultations. The Philippine Dermatological Society also donated ointment for those who will consult.

 

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The Philippine Leprosy Mission received support from the Girl Scouts of the Philippines! http://leprosy.org.ph/2014/02/17/the-philippine-leprosy-mission-received-support-from-the-girl-scouts-of-the-philippines/ Mon, 17 Feb 2014 07:16:49 +0000 http://leprosy.org.ph/?p=542 GS

The Philippine Leprosy Mission (PLM), a non-stock, non-profit organization dedicated to the cure and care of persons affected by leprosy, is continuing its advocacy and partnership with the Department of Health to control leprosy in hyper-endemic areas. Despite the discovery of medicine to treat the disease and the continuous effort to ensure that they receive immediate diagnosis and treatment, PLM’s challenge lies in educating the public not to ostracise and discriminate the persons affected by leprosy and to remove the stigma attached to the disease. As PLM intensifies its leprosy awareness campaigns, the Girl Scout of the Philippines did not hesitate to respond to PLM’s challenge. Faithful to their Scout’s Promise to help other people, the Girl Scouts of the Philippines helped the persons affected by leprosy by adopting the PLM coin banks. In one of their activities early this year the Girl Scouts took time to listen to PLM’s challenge to help reduce stigma and discrimination against the persons who have or had leprosy. They also showed their love and support for this advocacy by handing over their donations amounting to Php71,959. The programs of the Girl Scouts of the Philippines are really helpful in developing the girls to share their lives for others.

Encouraged by this show of support, PLM is praying that more people will support and donate to enable PLM to continue its mission to find and treat leprosy cases and restore lives of persons affected by leprosy. For information and donations visit PLM’s website (www.leprosy.org.ph) or deposit your donations to:

Bank of Philippine Islands
West Triangle Branch Peso Acct. No. 3053-4518-36
West Triangle Branch US Dollar Acct. No. 3054-0158-94

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A pedicab driver’s story http://leprosy.org.ph/2014/02/02/a-pedicab-drivers-story/ Sun, 02 Feb 2014 06:36:48 +0000 http://leprosy.org.ph/?p=539 Contributor: Pearl Weena Sabido, MD

Juan, a pedicab driver, was diagnosed with leprosy (Hansen’s disease). He has since lost his home, been abandoned by his wife, and even had his own parents turn their backs on him.

It began as a reddish, numb swelling on the top of his left foot which soon worsened until his foot ended up looking like a sausage and lesions began to appear on his face and ears. After a few months, he decided to consult at the Dermatology Clinic of Philippine General Hospital where he was eventually diagnosed with Hansen’s disease.
He bitterly recounts how his wife left him soon after she learned of his disease. She was with him when the diagnosis was revealed and the treatable nature of the disease was explained to them. “Parang di nya siguro pinakinggan, parang kaplastikan lang siguro sinasagot nya sa duktor… mga wala pa isang buwan, bigla na lang sya nawala…” (Perhaps she wasn’t paying attention, or perhaps she was pretending to understand… But after a month, she was gone.)

Despite having been adequately treated with Multi-Drug Therapy since then, he continues to agonize through the insecurity that the disease’s physical and psychological impact has imprinted on him. He continues to be estranged from his parents and his ex-wife, and would practically be homeless if not for the pedicab where he has been sleeping away many a cold night. Needless to say, he has thought about ending his life at several points in the past.

Yet he carries on, largely through the social and emotional support that he derives from the Philippine Leprosy Mission (PLM) as well as his daughter’s love. He also feels very grateful to the PLM for having supported his daughter through college under the Educational Assistance Program.
He says, “Malaki ang utang na loob ko… dahil tinulungan nila ako, kahit papano, napa-aral nila yung anak ko…” (I am extremely indebted [to the PLM]… because they helped send my child to school.).
Leprosy took away so much from Juan yet he never lost hope because of his daughter’s love, the care of his doctors, and support from the Philippine Leprosy Mission.

YOU CAN HELP Juan and many other leprosy-affected Filipinos through the Philippine Leprosy Mission.

Pearl Weena Sabido is a volunteer writer of the Philippine Leprosy Mission. She is a graduate of the University of the Philippines College of Medicine and completed her dermatology residency training at the St. Luke’s Medical Center, Metro Manila.

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World Leprosy Day 2014 http://leprosy.org.ph/2014/02/02/world-leprosy-day-2014/ http://leprosy.org.ph/2014/02/02/world-leprosy-day-2014/#comments Sun, 02 Feb 2014 06:27:19 +0000 http://leprosy.org.ph/?p=530 WorldLepDayAnnounce2014

Dear Friends,

World Leprosy Day 2014 calls for a massive, concerted, united effort to raise awareness about leprosy and the problems created by this chronic but curable disease. It is not enough to know about leprosy–we all have to ACT WITH A SENSE OF URGENCY in order to prevent and address the physical, psychosocial, and economic problems that leprosy brings.

Today is also a day of prayer for leprosy patients, their loved ones, and cured patients who struggle to be productive members of society–may they continue to have faith and to heal. Let us also pray for leprosy workers, public and private agencies who could help, and all those who are already assisting leprosy patients–may we truly work together for a world that is free of the worst aspects of leprosy–free from disability, stigma, and discrimination.

Belen Lardizabal Dofitas, MD FPDS
PLM Board of Trustees

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Sheila’s hope http://leprosy.org.ph/2014/01/07/sheilas-hope/ http://leprosy.org.ph/2014/01/07/sheilas-hope/#comments Tue, 07 Jan 2014 08:02:58 +0000 http://leprosy.org.ph/?p=524 Dear Friends,

Let me tell you something about myself. I look unusual with dark patches on my face.  My skin looks dark and reddish but, despite my physical appearance, my friends say that my smile and my laughter bring light to the room.  Right now, I feel grateful that I am alive and free…BUT that was not the case before. Just like other patients who first learned from their doctors that they had leprosy, I felt betrayed and unloved by God. At that time, I wanted to end my life.  Only the thought of leaving my daughter alone kept me alive.

At first, I tried to hide my disease from relatives and neighbors. But my aunt learned about it and whenever we had misunderstandings, my aunt would go outside our house and shout “leper”!  Even my own family destroyed my personal things, thinking that these were contagious too.

Doctors told me that leprosy destroys one’s nerves if left untreated for a long time. My skin would become numb and I would not feel pain. But why did I feel so much pain from the way I was treated by my relatives? When my husband abandoned me and my daughter, why did it hurt so much? When I visited my husband’s workplace and he pretended not to know me, even denying that I was his wife, why did I feel so much pain in my body?  I asked myself so many times: Did I stop being a wife because of leprosy? Didn’t I deserve respect even if I had leprosy?

All these questions played in my mind as I continued taking the pills called Multi Drug Therapy (MDT). The MDT cured me of leprosy within 12 months . I am no longer contagious. But why do people cringe when I get near them?

In this dark and lonely path, I prayed for light.  God, the source of life and hope, led me to join the PGH Hansen’s Club where I found encouragement, met new friends, and got a deep understanding about leprosy.  Through the Philippine Leprosy Mission’s (PLM) support of Hansen’s Club activities and projects, we were empowered economically and strengthened to trust God more in our daily lives. Little by little, I gained back my confidence and developed the courage to live independently. The livelihood training activities sponsored by PLM such as the soap and rug making helped me and other members augment our incomes.

I am glad I did not give up. My husband came back and we are now facing life’s challenges together. I have hope for the future and I am continually praying that our community will no longer discriminate people like me who had the disease… I hope they will show us compassion and understanding… just like my aunt who now calls me by my own name…

∞∞Sheila∞∞

 

 

 

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Leprosy Awareness Campaigns http://leprosy.org.ph/2013/04/15/leprosy-awareness-campaigns/ http://leprosy.org.ph/2013/04/15/leprosy-awareness-campaigns/#comments Mon, 15 Apr 2013 05:35:16 +0000 http://leprosy.org.ph/?p=432

PLM broke ground once more in its advocacy to reduce the stigma of leprosy.
We did a ‘first’ when we  appeared live on air and on TV in DZMM Teleradyo’s
Magandang Gabi, Doc  (Feb. 7, 2013) with a treated leprosy patient and PLM
scholar, Dazelle Ann Coucher. Daz was hailed by the hosts, Nina Corpuz and
Dr Luisa Puyat, as a heroine amongst leprosy patients for having the courage
to appear in the show to tell her story.

Daz is indeed very courageous and so empowered through the support and
encouragement of PLM and the Hansen’s Club. She agreed to appear on the show
despite the fact that she was having a mild lepra reaction ( ENL) and was
also nervous. This did not show at all during the show and she was praised
for her confident and pleasant aura.

We hope that our key messages about leprosy will be remembered by the
listeners and that many more will be compassionate rather than fearful
towards leprosy affected persons.

-Belen Dofitas, M.D
President, Philippine Leprosy Mission

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Philippine Leprosy Mission @ 50: Improving Lives, Restoring Dignity http://leprosy.org.ph/2012/04/09/philippine-leprosy-mission-50-improving-lives-restoring-dignity/ http://leprosy.org.ph/2012/04/09/philippine-leprosy-mission-50-improving-lives-restoring-dignity/#comments Mon, 09 Apr 2012 05:46:44 +0000 http://leprosy.webphils.com/?p=260

The Philippine Leprosy Mission will be celebrating its 50th anniversary on April 10, 2012. The organization began in the early 1920s as the Philippine Evangelical Leprosy Mission (PELM), a group of missionaries sent to take care of the spiritual and physical needs of Protestant patients in what was then known as the Culion Leper Colony. In 1962, the Philippine Leprosy Mission was registered at the Securities and Exchange Commission and has been a major partner of the Department of Health in leprosy control ever since.

A Thanksgiving service and dinner will be held on Tuesday, April 10, 2012 at the Bayanihan Center, United Laboratories compound, Pasig City from 4-11PM. Long-time partners from the Department of Health-National Leprosy Control Program, local government, donors, and the private sector will join in the celebration and take time to look back at PLM’s legacy over the past 50 years as it worked towards the care and rehabilitation of persons affected by leprosy.

Persons Affected by Leprosy (PALs) will be given a special treat called “PALs Day” by PLM and the Section of Dermatology, Philippine General Hospital on Wednesday, April 11, 2012 (10AM-1PM). A free show featuring four local magicians and a lunch will be held at the UP College of Medicine Class 72 Theater.

PLM wishes to thank all our partners and faithful donors for 50 years of fulfilling contributions to the betterment of our fellowmen. May God continue to bless us with your generous support!

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