As per CDC recommendations, HIV testing should be offered to all adults at any health care visit which would include health screenings routinely done during an inmate’s stay in a correctional facility. Testing for HIV not only helps identify newly diagnosed HIV positive patients, leading to prompt initiation of vital treatment; it can also halt further transmission of the disease.
Concern: How can we be sure that a patient has all of the information required to consent to a test?
Concern: How do inmates get their results?
HWA: Since notification of results must be done face-to-face, a process must be in place to insure that an inmate’s privacy is protected. We can provide you with literature to help with giving results and post test education. If an inmate’s result is positive, you may chose to give the patient the results yourself or call your local Department of Health to help with the process. Please remember that if you choose to give positive results yourself, the DOH must still be notified by law. The DOH can help identify HIV/AIDS specialists and or agencies for the patient’s future care. If you are already affiliated with a clinic that offers HIV care, you may continue to use their services.
HWA: If the inmate is already having blood work done, an extra tube can be drawn for a blood ELISA test. Otherwise, conventional testing takes as little as three minutes.
Concern: How will the cost of testing be covered?
HWA: We will cover any additional lab costs associated with expanded testing.