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Prisons

Volume 474: debated on Thursday 3 April 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many (a) high and (b) medium security psychiatric beds exist in (i) prison facilities and (ii) health facilities used by the Prison Service; and how many (A) high and (B) medium security psychiatric beds were in use by prisoners in (1) prison facilities and (2) health facilities used by the Prison Service in each of the last five years. (193505)

Prisons are not designated for treatment under the Mental Health Act and there are no high or medium secure psychiatric beds in the prison estate.

In NHS units in England, for 2006-07, the latest period for which figures are available, there was an average daily number of 2,993 mental illness secure unit beds, and 516 learning disability secure unit beds1.

Prisoners with mental disorder that meet the criteria for transfer under the Mental Health Act 1983 are transferred, as patients, to mental health facilities commissioned by the national health service.

The number of prisoners transferred in the last five years are shown in the following table.

1 Source:

Department of Health KH03 return.

Number

2003

786

2004

891

2005

900

2006

962

2007

926