Abstract – Developing a human rights-based program for tuberculosis control in Georgian prisons

Medea Gegia, Iagor Kalandadze, Mikheil Madzgharashvili, and Jennifer Furin

Health and Human Rights 13/2

Published December 2011


Tuberculosis (TB) is one of the leading infectious killers of adults globally. Incarcerated individuals represent a vulnerable population when it comes to TB exposure, development of disease, and poor treatment outcomes. The TB pandemic in prisons is a serious human rights issue, and multiple global organizations have called for human rights-based strategies to address it. There are, however, few countries implementing such programs on the ground. Georgia, a former Soviet republic located in the Caucasus Mountains, has high rates of TB and a large prison population. This paper describes a needs assessment carried out in one prison in Georgia and the human rights-based strategy being implemented by the Georgian National TB Program to address TB control in the prison setting. It is hoped that the proposed program can serve as a model for other countries with high rates of TB among incarcerated individuals.