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From cell to cell: Eliminating HIV in prisons

From cell to cell: Eliminating HIV in prisons

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In the first episode of our EU Confidential: In Focus mini-series on HIV in Europe, we take you inside a French prison successfully tackling the spread of the disease.

POLITICO’s Sarah-Taïssir Bencharif and Cristina Gonzalez head to Montpellier to meet the medical team at Maison d’arrêt de Villeneuve-lès-Maguelone. Doctor Fadi Meroueh, the head of the prison’s clinic, explains the innovative protocols and medicines they’ve put in place to limit the spread of HIV among prisoners, as well as the challenges of practicing medicine in prison and the various ways HIV can spread from cell to cell.

If Europe wants to eradicate HIV transmission, it must take a closer look at its prisons. The figures speak for themselves: In the WHO’s European Region, the HIV rate stands at around 0.43 percent for the general population but at least 2.6 percent among prisoners, according to the latest available data. But eliminating the disease in this complex setting is anything but easy. POLITICO takes you inside this prison to better understand the stakes, the challenges — and the successes — in stopping HIV transmission, one immune cell and jail cell at a time.

This is the first of several bonus episodes of EU Confidential coming to you over the next month. Your regular EU Confidential episodes will still appear in your feed every Thursday.

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