We’ve been running healthcare services in these challenging environments since 2012 and now provide care for more than 2,500 people including men, women and juveniles. Our services look after the physical and mental health care needs of all prisoners.
We operate round-the-clock, nurse-led healthcare including prisoner screening on arrival and all primary care such as minor surgery, in-patient units and prescribing. We also coordinate a wide range of other service providers, such as GP practices, to provide seamless care.
The safety of our team and the people we look after, particularly the most vulnerable, is our priority and we work closely with prison management. We also maximise the amount of ‘wing-based’ care given, which not only helps us to reduce risk posed by moving prisoners, but also helps improve waiting times and reduce the number of missed appointments.
Our motivated teams are driven by our belief that if you are a prisoner you should receive same level of healthcare that you would in the community. We know that improving prisoners’ short and long-term health reduces their likelihood of reoffending.
Our prison healthcare services are all different but they all have a common approach:
- Delivering seamless care – we look after all physical and mental health needs of prisoners by coordinating other healthcare providers for services to supplement our own, such as physiotherapy, optometry, radiography, substance misuse treatment, GP services, pharmacies and dental treatment. This is achieved with regular multi-agency meetings where incidents are shared and issues like safeguarding are addressed.
- Improving future health – everything we do is geared towards improving prisoners’ short and long term health outcomes so they can lead as normal a life as possible after release to reduce their likelihood of reoffending, which protects the public and saves money for the taxpayer. We also coordinate health and social services for a prisoner’s release to ensure the support they need is there when they most need it.
- Prioritising safety – our priority is the safety of our staff and prisoners, particularly the most vulnerable prisoners, by working closely with prison management and ensuring all care is delivered by appropriately trained staff. We are always working to maximise the ‘wing-based’ care given in prisoners’ everyday setting to reduce waiting times, numbers of patients missing appointments and issues with moving prisoners.
- Quality and consistency of care – as well as being open to Care Quality Commission (CQC) inspections we also have a robust internal inspection, clinical governance and reporting systems, plus a national network of prison health care leads who share examples of best practice and lessons learned.
The prisons we provide health care for can be found by using the map or read more about the Virgin Care difference.