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Int J STD AIDS. 2008 Apr;19(4):243-5. doi: 10.1258/ijsa.2007.007294.

HIV in prisons: the London experience.

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  • 1Department of Genitourinary Medicine, St George's Hospital, London SW17 0QT, UK.


The commissioning of health services for all prisoners in publicly run prisons in England was transferred to local Primary Care Trusts in April 2006, pledging to provide an equivalent standard of health care as that in the community. We reviewed our experience of providing a specialist in-reach HIV service by performing a retrospective case notes review of all HIV-positive prisoners who accessed care from the prison genitourinary medicine service in three London prisons. A total of 112 HIV-positive prisoners were seen by the prison health-care service between April 2004 and 2006. This is the first study to look at how well HIV services are being provided during this transitional period of commissioning health services and provides insight into the challenges facing prison health-care providers. Good HIV outcomes are possible in prison but frequent transfers within the prison system and lack of effective HIV training among prison staff represent barriers to good care.

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