Midlands Prison Inmates Left Waiting Three Years For Mental Health Therapy

Photo Credit: irishprisons.ie

In Portlaoise Prison, there was a complete absence HSE in-reach psychiatric nursing input for the last five years.

A new report in to Mental Health treatment in Irish Prison Service is highlighting multiple failures in both Portlaoise, and Midlands Prison.

The Office of the Inspector of Prisons published a study into the provision of psychiatric care in prisons is highlighting concerns around staffing, overcrowded conditions and long waiting lists.

Both Portlaoise and Midlands prisons have come in for criticism for their deficient servicing of mental health.

In Portlaoise, the report highlights the total absence of any HSE in-reach psychiatric nursing input for the last five years.

The Inspector of Prisons branded this, for the highest security prison in the country, unacceptable.

The facility in Laois had just one GP for its 217 prisoners.

Midlands Prison has been described by one senior clinician as "a pretty bleak environment. . .not really suitable for those with mental 

The National Forensic Mental Health Service confirms 70 of the 250 patients in the Irish Prison Service, are in Midlands Prison.

With three of the four 'staff grade psychologist posts' vacant, prisoners needing therapy were waiting six months for group therapy and two and a half to three 
years for individual therapy.

Midlands Prison has just two GPs for it's 891 inmates.

At the time of inspection, all but Cork and Porlaoise prisons were overcrowded.

Fiona Coyle from Mental Health Reform says identifying and treating mental health issues before someone enters into the prison network would take a huge amount of pressure off the system:

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