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Less Time in Jail Could Slow HIV Spread

Less Time in Jail Could Slow HIV Spread

A just-published story suggests that the reducing of the amount of people incarcerated would slow HIV spread. Individuals who are locked up in prison continue to be sexually active, despite being separated from their spouse or partner, as do their partners.

In fact, while in jail, inmates have a higher opportunity to expand the number of sexual partners they have. A new study suggests that lowering the number of men in prison could help to curb the spreading of HIV and other STDs or sexually transmitted diseases.

According to a University of Michigan computer model, more men are being sent to prison that ever before. Also, the researchers in this study found that the longer the inmates sentence the worst the risks become.

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The researchers focused on men because there are far more men incarcerated than women. In 2009, the percentage of men that went to prison was 954 for every 100,000. In comparison, that same year just 68 out of every 100,000 women were sent to prison.

Researchers said that mass incarceration supports the assertion that it causes far-reaching and complicated unintended consequences that have significant implications related to public health.

A model was developed to simulate the number of partners people had who date without being incarcerated compared to those who were, to see what the differences were.

Data was used from prior studies suggesting that when men are jailed, they have a higher risk of ending a relationship and become less desirable as a partner.

They found that incarceration increased the amount of sexual partners for both males and females. They discovered as well that the longer the sentence, the worst the effect.

The results of this study using computerized models are not easily applied to the real world, but are surely thought to provoke and can demonstrate what is possible, said the lead author of the study.

The researchers concluded that high level of incarceration had a role in the level of sexual behavior in the community and increased the risk of both HIV and STDs.

Less Time in Jail Could Slow HIV Spread

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