PRISONERS and staff of Luzira and Gulu prisons will be counselled
and tested for HIV over the next one year, courtesy of the AIDS
Information Centre (AIC).
According to an agreement signed on Tuesday, the staff and
inmates will be provided with TB prophylaxis, a preventive
treatment, to reduce the spread of the disease.
"HIV opportunistic infections, like TB are the leading cause of
death among inmates and staff. Over 60% of TB patients are also
HIV-positive," said Denson Nyabana, the assistant commissioner
for health services in the Prisons Service.
The partnership will also enable staff and prisoners to get
treatment. In 1993, the Prisons Service established the prisons
AIDS control programme to fight HIV.
However, limited funding and inadequate staffing have led to
limited access to voluntary counselling, testing and treatment.
Raymond Byaruhanga, AIC executive director, said post-test clubs
would be formed for those who have tested positive or not. The
group also plans to spend about sh20m on AIDS and TB
interventions in prisons.