Indian Association of Leprologists

Indian Association
of Leprologists

Indian Association of Leprologists

About IAL



Dear members and visitors to the IAL website,
Greetings from IAL

I am very happy to be interacting with you as President of Indian Association of Leprologists (IAL), the prestigious and oldest leprosy organization of India.

IAL is a professional organization established in 1950 by the word renown Leprologists Dr. Dharmendra; consisting of Leprologists, dermatologists, laboratory scientists, microbiologists, immunologists, molecular biologists, plastic surgeons, epidemiologists and social scientists with membership strength of about 1000 members at present.

The objectives of IAL include:
(a) To promote the study of and research in leprosy,
(b) To create public opinion in matters relating to the prevention and cure of leprosy and rehabilitation of patients and
(c) To cooperate with the medical and other regional and national institutions having altogether or in part similar objectives.

The Indian Association of Leprologists (IAL) has been a major force in the fight against leprosy in India. It has been more than a professional body and has always maintained a strong interest in the national efforts in the fight against the disease. IAL also works closely with Hind Kust Nivaran Sangh (HKNS) and supports HKNS in bringing out the popular and respected leprosy journal of the word, the Indian Journal of Leprosy (IJL), which is one of the oldest peer reviewed journals of India, dedicated to publishing best research in the areas of leprosy.

This year to further the activities of our association, we have started IAL Academy, which will be the academic and research wing of IAL, working under the supervision of IAL EC. It will design and plan academic programmes and research activities to further knowledge and expertise involving its members in the field of leprosy. One of its objectives is to promote advocacy of leprosy at various national and international forums. IAL academy will also begin Leprosy focus groups (LFG) consisting of expert members to work in a dedicated manner on its sub-specialties which need attention in the field of leprosy.

IAL is looking forward to working together with leprosy associations and societies of Asia and Latin America where leprosy is of public health importance. I am sure these new alliances will be useful as knowledge sharing avenues for all concerned to work toward the goal of ‘Zero leprosy’ globally.

I am very happy to inform you that our association IAL is also gearing up to take an active part in organising and hosting the International leprosy congress (ILC) in the year 2022 in India.

With the erudite central council members to advise on various matters, with active support of IAL members and a wonderful executive team to carry out our activities, I am very confident that IAL will attain greater heights in the next two years. As a President of IAL, I promise to do my best to live up to ideals of this esteemed association.

With best wishes,
P Narasimha Rao MD PhD
President, IAL



Greetings to you from the IAL Secretariat in Hyderabad! I hope that you and your families are safe and well.

We face unprecedented times. There is a sense of uncertainty on all fronts. But the vision and purpose of the association should go on. Many other illnesses have taken a back seat with all energies and resources redirected to covid care. Leprosy has been no exception. Patients have had difficulty in accessing medical care and regular MDT due to various versions of the lockdown. Adherence to MDT has suffered and this could affect other facets of the disease.

At IAL we look forward to refocusing on leprosy with renewed zeal. India contributes over 50% of the world’s leprosy and there is much we can do as an association to be a catalyst for change in order to see a reduction of leprosy in India. We wish to bring back the entire agenda related to leprosy prevention, care and research to the front burner. This needs the renewed passion and full cooperation of all members of the association.

It is becoming more evident that a strategy that only focuses on MDT is insufficient to bring down the new cases in the community. The implementation of single dose rifampicin (SDR) to contacts of leprosy patients is a promising approach that goes beyond MDT in interrupting transmission. We would like to reappraise on the benefits of this option and see how we can take this forward as an association. The benefit of immunotherapy with MIP Vaccine in reducing bacterial load not only in the patient but also potentially in the community is an approach that goes beyond MDT and as an association we hope to see it’s wider availability and use.

As an association we hope to increase the awareness regarding the disease in the community as well among health care professionals through CME’s, workshops, symposia and webinars. The IAL Academy will not only play a great role in achieving this objective but also identify and promote clinical, basic and operational research among its members on strategically important gaps in knowledge.

It is my personal privilege to serve the association as its secretary and will look forward to hearing from you your ideas and suggestions to take the association forward and to greater heights.

Stay safe, stay well and stay motivated! We will see a leprosy-free India!

With best wishes,
Dr Sujai K Suneetha MBBS, M Phil, DCP, PhD
Honorary Secretary, IAL