Purpose of the Museum
The National Hansen’s Disease Museum was established as part of the national effort to erase the stigma associated with Hansen’s disease and to restore the respect of people affected by the disease by building a space for public edification and dissemination of correct information regarding this disease.
What is Hansen’s Disease?
- Hansen's disease is a chronic infectious disease caused by Mycobacterium leprae. - Not all cases of Mycobacterium leprae infection result in Hansen’s disease. Nowadays, only a few people develop the disease. - Nor does the disease progress rapidly once contracted. - The primary symptoms are skin lesion and loss of sensation. - Before effective drugs were developed, the disease often resulted in disfigurement and left serious disabilities even when it was in remission. - The disability and disfigurement caused stigma and discrimination. - Now, effective drugs are available. With early detection and treatment, the disease can be cured with no aftereffects.