Irish Penal Reform Trust

Health in Prison

IPRT believes that responsibility for the provision of healthcare should be transferred from the IPS to the HSE. In addition to this, IPRT believes that those with mental illness should be diverted away from the criminal justice system and should be treated within a community setting, where possible. 

This section includes posts on health in prison, including mental health and drug policy. 

Penal Reform International launch Global Prison Trends 2019

21st May 2019

Global Prison Trends 2019 is the fifth edition in PRI’s annual flagship Global Prison Trends series which identifies topical developments and challenges in criminal justice, and prison policy and practice.

Scotland: Mental Health and Wellbeing of Young People in Custody

21st May 2019

The Scottish Centre for Crime and Justice Research (SCCJR) has published a review identifying ways to improve the health and wellbeing of young people in custody.

UK: First cross-government suicide prevention plan

22nd January 2019

UK Government has published its first cross-government suicide prevention plan with the objective of reducing deaths from suicide through the use of new technology and data.

Joint Committee on Future of Mental Health Care: Final report

18th October 2018

The Oireachtas Joint Committee on Future of Mental Health Care has published its final report, with a core recommendation of increasing the number of acute beds from 22 to 50 per 100,000 over 3 years.

Self-Harm in Irish Prisons 2017 Report

4th October 2018

The first report on episodes of self-harm recorded in Irish Prisons has been published.

‘Unacceptable’ conditions for mentally ill prisoners

11th July 2018

IPRT Executive Director Deirdre Malone speaks to Irish Legal News in response to an Irish Times article reporting on conditions for mentally ill prisoners.

IPRT Presentation to the Joint Committee on the Future of Mental Health Care

23rd May 2018

In our appearance before the Committee, IPRT made a number of recommendations, including investment and use of prevention and early intervention supports.

'Mental Illness in Irish Prisoners'

14th November 2017

'Mental Illness in Irish Prisoners: Psychiatric Morbidity in Sentenced, Remanded and Newly Committed Prisoners' (Kennedy et al., 2005) was the first systematic and representative survey of mental health in the Irish Prison population.

The Irish Times: 'High levels of hepatitis C uncovered among prisoners and homeless'

23rd August 2017

An article in today's Irish Times on an innovative new Hepatitis C screening programme at Mountjoy Prison, whose success could be replicated elsewhere.

National Drugs Strategy: 'Reducing Harm, Supporting Recovery 2017 – 2025’

17th July 2017

The “Reducing Harm, Supporting Recovery – a health led response to drug and alcohol use in Ireland 2017-2025” strategy sets out the Government’s response to addressing the harm caused by substance misuse in society over the next eight years.

Respect for rights in the penal system with prison as a last resort.



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