Published: 2016-12-30

Passive surveillance of communicable diseases among inmates of Jos central prison, Nigeria

Ado-Baba Ahmed, Himma Bakam, Hosea C. Yayock, Gregory M. Sarki


Background: This paper presents a comprehensive study of the disease profile among inmates of Jos prison, Nigeria.  

Methods: Blood samples were examined using Giemsa-stained thin and thick smears for Plasmodium parasites determine and stat-pak was employed to detect antibodies against HIV types I and II, sputum samples were stained by Ziehl-Nelson method and examined for acid fast Bacilli. Intestinal parasites were identified and characterized from stool samples using normal saline and lugol’s iodine method and subsequently formal-ether concentration and Kato-katz technique.

Results: Out of 132 inmates that presented themselves for medical treatment at the prison clinic, eighty-nine (67.4%) (95% CI=62.4-72.4) were infected with various pathogenic agents, namely Plasmodium parasites (37.1%), intestinal parasites (14.4%), human immunodeficiency virus (11.4%) and Mycobacterium tuberculosis (4.5%). The parasites occurred both as mono and mixed-double and triple infections. Malaria due to Plasmodium falciparum predominates with 65.3% (32/49) while non-falciparum species had 20.4% due to P. malariae (16.3%) and P. vivax (4.1%). Intestinal parasites accounted for 14.4% (95% CI=9.4-19.4) of the infections comprising five species, with Entamoeba hystolytica dorminating (57.9%) and Strogyloides stercoralis rare (4.8%). Of the co-infection, the highest combination was Plasmodium + HIV (35.3%). Fifteen inmates had HIV virus (16.5%) and 6 (6.6%) had Mycobacterium tuberculosis. The age group 1-40 years recorded 93.3% and 100% of the HIV and tuberculosis infections respectively. Eleven deaths were recorded 4 years preceding this survey from various causes including HIV and septicemia.

Conclusions: The study concludes that Nigerian prisons pose a serious threat as reservoir of diseases to the nation.


Passive surveillance, Communicable diseases, Prison inmates, Jos, Nigeria

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