A program that identified HIV-positive jail detainees was effective in linking people who are living with HIV with treatment following their detainment, a study published in the journal AIDS and Behavior found.
In some cases the program even helped to lower patients' viral load, researchers reported.
Researchers from Emory University studied a sample of 1,021 HIV-infected people identified at 10 sites by the federal Enhancing Linkages to HIV Primary Care in Jail Settings Initiative. Of that sample, 79 percent received care within 30 days of release from jail.
Care included meetings with HIV care providers, viral load or cell count tests or getting a prescription for HIV/AIDS medicine.
The researchers suggest that voluntary testing programs within jails are a feasible option for linking HIV-positive detainees with care that could be crucial to their health.
The full study is available for purchase HERE.