Louisiana fails to provide basic HIV services to thousands of inmates in parish jails, endangering the health of individuals and the communities to which they return, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today.
The 70-page report, “Paying the Price: Failure to Deliver HIV Services in Louisiana Parish Jails,” documents the inadequate, haphazard, and in many cases, non-existent HIV testing, treatment, and linkage to care in the jails. Only a handful of the state’s 104 parish jails offer HIV tests to every inmate on entry, as the US government’s Center for Disease Control recommends. In many jails, HIV treatment is delayed, interrupted, or denied altogether, and continuity of care is disrupted by failure to link HIV-positive prisoners to medical care in the community when they leave the jail. The report was released in conjunction with the Louisiana AIDS Advocacy Network’s Legislative Awareness Day, which brought hundreds of people…
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