Mental health care and the criminal justice system

This briefing paper examines the provision of mental health care in the criminal justice system. It looks at what has been achieved to date and identifies priorities for further work. It starts with an overview of the prison population, looking at ethnicity, gender, young people and Imprisonment for Public Protection.

The section on mental health care in prison covers: identifying mental health problems; transfer to NHS care; primary mental health care; dual diagnosis; personality disorders. Alternatives to imprisonment including diversion and community sentences are discussed.

The report concludes that the introduction of inreach teams has lead to an improvement in mental health care in some prisons but the picture is still mixed. The Bradley Report has set the government an ambitions agenda to make improvements.

Publisher: 
Sainsbury Centre for Mental Health
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