Doctors attack prison healthcare

A year of “political failure” has led to prisons being turned into “just a holding pen for criminals”, the British Medical Association has said.

A report published today attacks the government for neglecting the problems of prison doctors, blaming insufficient funding and the spread of illegal narcotics throughout UK prisons for exacerbating the crisis.

“The combined result of these problems is that the prison system is releasing large numbers of individuals who are not fit to return to the community,” BMA committee member Dr Redmond Walsh commented.

A Ministry of Justice spokesperson said: “We are working to improve the areas identified by the doctors, for example reception screening is currently being reviewed, and we are working to produce guidance which will improve the operation of court diversion schemes for mentally ill offenders.”

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