Two-thirds of Grootvlei inmates on ARV treatment

OCTOBER 14, 2014

Justice and Correctional Services Deputy Minister Thabang Makwetla has commended the Department of Correctional Services' Grootvlei Management Area in Bloemfontein for ensuring that more than two-thirds of their inmates receive antiretroviral (ARV) treatment.

Deputy Minister Makwetla visited the Grootvlei Correctional Centre on Monday as part of his country-wide visits to various correctional centres to improve service delivery.

“The Grootvlei Management Area must be commended for their efforts towards ensuring that more than 50% of their inmate population have undergone HIV testing, and more than two-thirds of this population are receiving ARV treatment in order to maximally suppress the HIV virus and stop the progression of the HIV disease,” said Deputy Minister Makwetla.

He told the department’s senior managers that as a department, they must intensify their efforts with regards to TB and HIV and Aids screening and treatment, as well as general training and mentoring of staff on TB and HIV management.

“We also need to aggressively move in the direction of more structured, and regular, rehabilitation programmes for inmates. 

“Whilst DCS has made significant progress in transforming our facilities from prisons to correctional centres, we can do much more.”

As part of ensuring that the department is more innovative and results-driven, on 9 October the Deputy Minister visited Tswelopele Correctional Centre in the Northern Cape, on 8 October he was at St. Albans Correctional Centre in the Eastern Cape and on 7 October at Pollsmoor Correctional Centre in the Western Cape.

Other centres are scheduled to be visited later this month. - SANews.gov