According to the Jewish Encylopedia:
Priests were in charge of the diagnosis of all diseases. They were not allowed to live in a community that didn’t have a doctor.
Those who were diagnosed with the curable strain of leprosy had to appear before a priest every 7 days. Once considered “clean” or cured they had to offer sacrifices and endure a cleansing process.
Leprosy in the Ancient times was considered a punishment from God for some transgression or sin:
Miriam – Numbers 12:10; Joab and his descendants – 2 Samuel 3:29; Gehazi – 2 Kings 5:27; and Uzziah – 2 Chronicles 26:19
A leper had to shout unclean when entering a place where there were people or anywhere they walked while in a town or city. People kept a distance of 6 feet or over a 100 feet if there was a wind. Lepers were secluded from society even from family and certainly not touched by human hands.
Missionary doctor, Paul Brand, whose work with lepers is legendary, explained leprosy like this: "Hansen’s disease" "only numbs the extremities. The destruction of limbs follows solely because the warning system of pain is gone; so the routine of life takes its toll upon lepers by cuts, burns, bruises, sprains, broken bones, all without any consciousness by the leper that it has happened. Consequently, he continues with open, festering wounds, or limps on twisted legs, and gradually becomes disfigured and repulsive to others.”
From a sermon by Daren Mitchell, Touching the Untouchable, 5/22/2012
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