Exploring the challenges of rural people affected by leprosy to reintegrate within their community of origin and their coping mechanisms: A Study in ALERT Center, Addis Ababa

No Thumbnail Available



Journal Title

Journal ISSN

Volume Title


Addis Ababa University


People affected by leprosy (PAL) from rural areas in Ethiopia have been sufferingji-om the bio psychosocial and economic challenges but lillie is known about how they have developed a variety of coping mechanisms. This study explored the challenges of rural PAL to reintegrate within their community of origin and their coping mechanisms after receiving treatment at ALERT Hospital. The study adopted the qualitative method with exploratory purpose. In-depth interview, key informant interview, focus group discussion and observation were employed to collect the data and thematic analysis was used to analyze the data. It applied the nonprobability sampling method with purposive sampling. Twenty seven participants were recruited for the study, twenty two of them were PAL the others were key informants. The findings of the study showed the challenges of the rural PAL such as leprosy reaction, loss of sensation, wound, deformity and disability. They also encounter psychological disorders like anxiety and depression. SOCially, they have a problem of interaction, stigma, discrimination and marital relationship. Their productivity and property ownership was affected by leprosy. Finally, because of leprosy they were unable to reintegrate within their community of origin after being treated at ALERT hospital. The study also illustrated their coping mechanisms such as hiding their health status, using traditional treatment, migration, going to spiritual places, institutional support and begging. The results of the study would be used for intervention programs by stake holders to enhance the reintegration of rural PAL to their community of origin after their treatment at ALERT Hospital and to increase their coping mechanisms. The study may have implications for different concerned bodies to advocate and to create awareness, for running case management and for further study to improve the health access and quality of care and to have appropriate policy about the rural People Affected by Leprosy.



leprosy to rereintegrate