WEPE615 - Poster Exhibition
Role of state and community programs on prison releasees' linkage to HIV care
L. LeRoy1, S. Donahue1, A. Lee1, L. Solomon2, M. Costa1, J. Rich3, D. Rosen4
1Abt Associates, Inc., Domestic Health Division, Cambridge, United States, 2Abt Associates, Inc., Domestic Health Division, Bethesda, United States, 3Brown Medical School, The Miriam Hospital, Medicine and Community Health, Providence, United States, 4University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Cecil G. Sheps Center for Health Services Research, Chapel Hill, United States
populations have higher rates of HIV infection compared to those in the
community. HIV-positive offenders frequently
do not make successful, timely transitions to comprehensive medical services
after release from prison. The purpose
of this study was to explore state and community policies that influence
HIV-infected prisoners´ linkage to care post-release.
Methods: We used
in-depth semi-structured interviews with providers, corrections staff, and
policymakers in North Carolina and Rhode Island to learn about prison policies,
administrative protocols, and political factors related to HIV care and social
services and linkage to care from prison to the community. We used NVIVO software to code responses and
analyzed data to determine major themes.
providers shared their views on care delivery and local programs and policies that
may influence HIV-positive releasees' linkage to needed services. Corrections staff
described prison HIV care and discharge planning and explained collaborative
activities necessary for successful linkage to care upon release. Policymakers, public servants, and staff from
community-based organizations discussed the political climate, funding
constraints, and other factors that can influence access to treatment and care
services upon release, including policies for Medicaid and Medicare, state
HIV/AIDS service and medication assistance programs, and other medical,
behavioral, and social service programs.
Summary themes revealed the influence of these programs, procedures, and
conditions on linkage to care for HIV-positive offenders following release.
Conclusions: Support of linkage to
care is a critical component of efforts to improve access to HIV care for
released inmates. We outline key
features of successful linkages to care and describe state and local policies,
including funding mechanisms, institutional policies, and political climate, which
influence access to HIV/AIDS treatment and related services for releasees. Findings
will help identify what criminal justice systems, HIV providers and communities
need to have in place to improve access to care for newly released inmates.
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