Port Blair. Aug 09: (Integrated STI, HIV TB and Hepatitis) ISHTH Campaign was launched at District Jail Prothrapur, A & N Islands on 9th August 2023. The campaign was launched in the presence of Special Guests Mr. Vikram Singh, DANICS, Superintendent, District Jail, Prothrapur and Mr.Rizwanullah, Deputy Secretary District Jail by the lighting of the lamp.
Dr Subrata Saha, Project Director, A & N AIDS Control Society (ANACS), welcomed the invitees, participants and the prison inmates.
Dr. Avijit Ray, Deputy Director (Health) ‘National Viral Hepatitis Control Program (NVHCP) from DHS and Dr. P.Lal, Joint Secretary, National Tuberculosis Elimination Programme (NTEP) from DHS were also present in the launch program of the ISHTH campaign.
Prison inmates, officials and staff from ANACS, Department of Health Services and Prison were present for the function.
Dr. Priyanka Yadav, Medical Officer i/c. FI-ART, GBPH gave a brief information on HIV, STI, TB and Hepatitis.
Other officials present were Dr.ShahinaMustaquim, Grade I (Microbiologist)/DD (Blood Safety) i/c and Dr. Lyra. P. Andrenes, Dermatology, STD Control Program, DHS.
Reports have also shown that the prevalence of HIV, sexually transmitted infections, hepatitis B and C and tuberculosis is much higher in prison populations than in the general population.
High risk behavior among inmates: unsafe sex, injecting drug practices, coercion, violence, poor mental health and lifestyle of many inmates prior to imprisonment make them more vulnerable and at risk for HIV/AIDS, STI, TB and Hepatitis. Therefore, it was strongly recommended for interventions at correctional institutions with prisoners being identified as one of the groups at higher risk. With the objective to saturate the coverage of inmates with services and early initiation of treatment, a national campaign (ISHTH Campaign) has been launched to cover all Prisons and Other Closed Settings (both government and private) throughout India.
At National level, The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW), The Ministry of Women and Child Development (WCD), The Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment (MSJE), The Ministry of Home Affairs (MoHA), National Health Mission (NHM), Central TB Division (CTD), National Viral Hepatitis Control Program (NVHCP) are involved to ensure execution of the campaign.
The function was concluded by vote of thanks from Dr. Rekha Verma, CMO District Jail, Prothrapur.