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J Public Health (Oxf). 2015 Mar;37(1):151-6. doi: 10.1093/pubmed/fdu022. Epub 2014 Apr 3.

An audit of hepatitis C service provision in a representative sample of prisons in England.

Author information

1
West Yorkshire Health Protection Team, Public Health England, Quarry House, Quarry Hill, Leeds LS2 7UE, UK.
2
Health and Justice Team, Public Health England, Block 2, FERA, Sand Hutton, York YO41 1LZ, UK.
3
Health and Justice Team, Public Health England, Wellington House, Waterloo Road, London SE1 8UG, UK.
4
Royal Liverpool University Hospital, Prescot Street, Liverpool L7 8XP, UK.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Prisons are an important setting to address prevention, testing and treatment of hepatitis C virus (HCV) and other blood-borne viruses. This audit examined current practice against national standards in a representative sample of prisons in England.

METHODS:

The audit tool was developed based on best practice guidelines and piloted in one prison. In December 2012, the audit was conducted in a further 20 prisons, which were chosen to represent different types, sizes and geographical spread across England.

RESULTS:

Testing for HCV was offered in the majority of prisons audited (20 of 21), but only two-thirds had a written policy on testing and treatment; less than a third had a steering group to oversee the process. The nature of services varied greatly. There were inconsistencies across data sources on testing.

CONCLUSIONS:

This audit found that while there were many areas of good practice, the quality and content of hepatitis C service provision varied. It highlighted the need to provide appropriate guidance for prisons in delivering a high-quality service, ensuring that relevant training is available for different staff and that adequate psychosocial support is provided to patients.

KEYWORDS:

communicable disease; prisons; public health

PMID:
24700887
DOI:
10.1093/pubmed/fdu022
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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