After reporting 27 leprosy, or Hansen’s disease cases in 2015, six cases have confirmed during the first four months of 2016 after the most recent case was reported in late April.

Seminole County, Florida Image/David Benbennick
Seminole County, Florida
Image/ David Benbennick

According to Florida Department of Health data, a confirmed case was reported from the Winter Spring, Seminole County area toward the end of April.

From the beginning of the year through today, confirmed cases have been reported from Martin County (Stuart), Bay County (Panama City), Seminole County (Winter Spring) and three in Brevard County (Merritt Island (2) and Titusville (1)).

The Florida Department of Health case definition for a confirmed case of leprosy is a clinically compatible illness in a person with confirmatory laboratory evidence.

During the ten-year-period of 2004 to 2014, Florida reported 92 cases, averaging less than 10 per year.

LISTEN: Richard W. Truman, Ph.D., Chief, Laboratory Research Branch with the National Hansen’s Disease Program discusses Leprosy in the US

According to the National Hansen’s Disease Program, 175 new cases were reported in the U.S. in 2014 (the most recent year for which data are available). Most (128 or 73%) of these new cases were reported in Arkansas, California, Florida, Hawaii, Louisiana, New York and Texas.