PROVIDENCE, RI The Miriam Hospital received three of the 12 newly awarded grants from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) aimed at improving HIV prevention and treatment of prison and jail inmates. The awards, issued to only a handful of institutions nationwide, are part of Seek, Test, and Treat: Addressing HIV in the Criminal Justice System NIH's largest research initiative to date to aggressively identify and treat HIV-positive inmates, parolees and probationers and help them continue care when they return to their home communities.
Currently, an estimated 1.1 million people in the United States are infected with HIV. Since the late 1990s, the number of new HIV infections has remained relatively stable, with approximately 56,000 new infections reported annually. Each year, an estimated one in seven individuals infected with HIV passes through a correctional facility, suggesting that there is a disproportionate number of HIV-positive individuals in the criminal justice system.
"Fighting the spread of HIV and AIDS among at-risk populations is a top public health priority," said U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse. "These federal grants will fund vital research at institutions like Miriam Hospital, research that holds great promise for prevention, early detection, and appropriate treatment."
Over the past two decades, The Miriam Hospital, together with Brown University, their affiliated Center for Prisoner Health and Human Rights and the Rhode Island Department of Corrections (RIDOC), has emerged as a leader in the field of prison health, including HIV care in correctional facilities. Researchers have led a wide range of studies looking at everything from the benefit of routine, jail-based HIV testing for inmates to treating opiate drug addiction in prison settings.
The grants to Miriam researchers and their collaborators will fund the following projects:
|Contact: Jessica Collins Grimes|