AI-powered Diagnostic Tool to Aid in the Early Detection of Leprosy

Jul 29, 2020

Working to eliminate leprosy

For over 30 years, Novartis and the Novartis Foundation have been working with partners around the world to eliminate leprosy. The introduction of multidrug therapy (MDT) in 1981 has helped to lead to a 99% reduction in the global burden of leprosy, and MDT has been donated by Novartis through the WHO since 2000. The introduction of multidrug therapy (MDT) in 1981 has helped to lead to a 99% reduction in the global burden of leprosy, and MDT has been donated by Novartis through the WHO since 2000.

But today an estimated 2 – 3 million people are still living with the disease and the Novartis Foundation has been working to accelerate efforts to eliminate leprosy by focusing on interventions that aim to interrupt transmission.

On January 29, Microsoft Corp. announced a new five-year program, AI for Health, which will leverage artificial intelligence (AI) technology to empower researchers and organizations to address some of the world’s toughest challenges in health.

Cover of ECTMIH Inside the black box administration of the Tanzanian Community Health Fund

The Novartis Foundation has been selected as one of the partners of the AI for Health initiative AI for Health initiative, and will be working to scale-up an exciting AI-powered diagnostic tool to aid in the early detection of leprosy.

The innovative digital tool promises to facilitate earlier leprosy diagnosis, enabling timely intervention to prevent patients from the debilitating effects of this ancient disease.

Learn more about the collaboration


Learn more about the Novartis commitment to fight leprosy