Needle exchange programs should be introduced in Victoria's prisons to reduce the transmission of blood-borne viruses, the Australian Medical Association's Victorian president says.

Dr Harry Hemley said needle exchange programs in the wider community had significantly reduced the spread of Hepatitis C and other blood-borne viruses.

About 35 per cent of prisoners tested positive to Hepatitis C but intravenous drug users in prisons were still denied access to safe injecting equipment, Dr Hemley said.

"Prisoners deserve the same rights to access and quality of health care as the wider community, this includes access to a needle exchange program while in detention," Dr Hemley said in a statement on Tuesday.

"Illicit intravenous drug use is harmful and risky but unfortunately is common in Victorian prisons," he said.

"What we need to focus on, from a health perspective, is reducing the risks to detainees, prison staff and the public by reducing the spread of blood-borne viruses through sharing contaminated injecting equipment.

"Most prisoners will join the wider community on release, so reducing the spread of blood borne viruses in prisons will also impact on transmission in the wider population."

Dr Hemley said detoxification facilities should also be available to prisoners to manage substance abuse problems.