Hansen’s Disease Program

Hansen’s Disease Program

The University of Miami/Jackson Memorial Hansen’s Disease (leprosy) Program has been in existence for over thirty years, evaluating and treating patients since 1983. It is one of 11 federally funded programs and the only program of its kind in Florida.

The Medical Director, Anne E. Burdick, M.D., M.P.H., Professor of Dermatology and Cutaneous Surgery is an experienced leprologist who has directed the program since 1994. Since then, the program has been funded continuously with federal National HD Program grants and contracts from HRSA.

The HD Nurse Coordinator, Lourdes Barquin, RN, has over 15 years of leprosy experience. She assists the Medical Director in patient care, performs neurosensory testing, coordinates consultative services, and provides patient education and counseling.

The leprosy program has a dedicated experienced team of medical specialists and allied health professionals providing outpatient medical and diagnostic services for HD and its related conditions. The medical team includes ophthalmology and podiatry specialists. Inpatient care for Miami-Dade County residents is available at Jackson Memorial Hospital.

The leprosy program provides services to persons in the continental United States and to individuals in the Caribbean, Latin America, and Africa who have dual citizenship or residency in the United States.

As of June 2017, the program had 223 registered individuals with 26 active cases with a confirmed diagnosis on multidrug antibiotic therapy, 15 individuals who completed their antibiotic therapy and are on treatment for leprosy complications involving their skin or nerves, and 15 are household contacts who shared an enclosed environment for a prolonged period of time with a person with untreated leprosy and have periodic screening.

Recently, an increased number of Floridians with no history of foreign travel to HD endemic areas or exposure to HD patients have been diagnosed with leprosy and make up the majority of the current active cases. The National HD Program has determined that a zoonosis due to infected armadillos in Florida is the probable cause of this increase in Florida born HD patients.

The UM/JMH HD clinic is held on Monday afternoons at the Jackson Memorial Ambulatory Care Center East, 1611 NW 12th Ave, Miami, FL 33136 in the second floor Dermatology Clinic. To make an appointment, contact the Nurse Coordinator, Lourdes Barquin, R.N. at (305) 585-2511.

Note: All patients, on their initial visit, are referred to JMH Finance Credit and Classification specialists to determine the existence of, or eligibility for, private insurance, Medicare or Medicaid. The UM/JMH leprosy program is used as the funding source of last resort for otherwise unfunded patients and for services/supplies not covered by insurance, Medicare, or Medicaid. Charges are based on Medicare reimbursement rates.