Mrs Virginia Mabhiza

The Zimbabwe Prisons and Correctional Services in partnership with Voluntary Services Overseas (VSO) is hosting a 3-day regional prisons conference in the capital.

The meeting is aimed at learning and sharing experiences while advocating for improved access to HIV/ AIDS, Adolescent and Youth Sexual and Reproductive Health (AYSRH) services to prison populations.

Civil society organisations, government departments and individuals working in collaboration with prisons and correctional services in Southern Africa are meeting in the capital to share notes on ways to improve access to HIV and AIDS, AYSRH services to prison populations.

Guest of honour at the event Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Permanent Secretary Mrs Virginia Mabhiza says there is need to adopt and implement policies on health reform in order to address the challenges of healthcare provision in prison settings.

Prisons in the SADC region are overcrowded and communicable diseases pose a serious threat to public health.

Health protection in prisons is thus considered an essential part of public health as prisons represent high-risk environments for the transmission of diseases among them tuberculosis, HIV and AIDS, STIs and hepatitis.