HIV infection detected in 443 Bihar prisoners in two years | Patna News

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PATNA: Of the 1.25 lakh inmates of Bihar jails screened in a period of two years, HIV infection has been detected in 443. However, the screening is still in progress for detection of tuberculosis (TB) infection in the prisoners.
Confirming the rising number of AIDS cases in prisoners, the Bihar State AIDS Control Society (BSACS) has now made arrangements of their tracking and treatment at various antiretroviral therapy (ART) units even after their release.
BSACS project director Anshul Agarwal said the screening in all the 59 prisons carried out from early 2020 till date confirmed 443 having HIV infections, warranting the need for their regular tracking and treatment.
BSACS has also decided to closely monitor the prisoners’ treatment at ART centres. He said 270 of the 443 HIV-infected prisoners have already been provided ART linkage while process is on to link others too. There are 28 ART centres in the state.
In case of prisoners being set free or those getting bail, BSACS keeps in touch with them and provides treatment facilities at the nearest ART centres. Agarwal said re-screening of jail inmates already linked with ART centres would be repeated every six months.
“Recently, Y R Gaitonde Centre (YRGC) was empaneled by National AIDS Control Organisation (NACO) and it will work with BSACS for prison intervention and other close-setting programmes in Bihar. The close-settings include Alpavas Grih and Sudhar Grih under social welfare department,” Agarwal added.
YRGC, founded in 1993, is a leading organisation dedicated to HIV/AIDS services and its active support to BSACS would help gear up screening and treatment facilities for AIDS patients, he added.
Agarwal said alarmed over the detection of AIDS among jail inmates, BSACS has now decided to screen them for TB infections too. An orientation programme was organised on Friday for screening of TB among jail inmates, he added.


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