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Jun 27

Call to track the spread of diseases in prison

Prison health authorities should be tracking the spread of HIV, hepatitis C and tuberculosis in jails, the Irish Penal Reform Trust has urged.

The Irish Prison Service is responsible for the health and wellbeing of prisoners, but the IPRT wants the Department of Health to be involved as well.

The IPRT said the monitoring of infectious diseases like HIV, hepatitis C, and TB should be urgently addressed as part of a comprehensive review of prison healthcare.

A European project, Improving Prison Conditions by Strengthening Infectious Disease Monitoring — Mapping Report on Ireland, published yesterday, addresses the gap in prison monitoring practices.

The EU-funded report, led by Harm Reduction International, argues for transparent procedures around monitoring infectious diseases in prison, including the publication of prevalence data.

The report also highlights the need for the expansion of harm reduction approaches in jail, including needle exchange programmes to reduce the spread of blood-borne infections.

It recommends the provision of naloxone to individuals at high risk of opioid overdose when they are released from prison.

Naloxone blocks the effects of opioids and may be combined within the same pill as an opioid to decrease the risk of misuse.

The inextricable links between social exclusion, drug usage, crime, and prison are among the central findings of the report.

 

Source: Evelyn Ring, Irish Examiner, 24/06/16

Posted by drugs.ie on 06/24 at 08:59 AM in