Thousands of prisoners may have undiagnosed TB

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The Department of Justice and Correctional Services (DJCS) promises an action plan to control the TB epidemic raging behind bars. According to health-e, thousands of prisoners across South Africa may unknowingly have tuberculosis (TB). The organization was attending the South Africa TB conference which is focusing on detection and prevention, treatment and management of TB.
The Department of Health released guidelines covering the management of TB, HIV and sexually transmitted infections (STIs) in South Africa’s facilities. The guidelines state that voluntary HIV counselling and testing must be offered to prisoners when they enter facilities, at an inmate’s request during incarceration and when they are released. All inmates should be screened for TB upon entry of facilities and at least bi-annually, this includes screening for anal, oral and genital STI’s. The guidelines acknowledged that overcrowding, unhygienic conditions and high inmate turn over contribute to the spread of infectious diseases within facilities.
AIDS lobby group the Treatment Action Campaign(TAC) and public interest organisation Section27 delivered a memorandum at the South African TB conference. The memorandum demanded the formation of an action plan to be shared with the groups, that DJCS follow the law and abide by its own regulations. Continue reading here

 

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About witsjusticeproject
The Wits Justice Project combines journalism, advocacy, law and education to make the criminal justice system work better for all.

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