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Mental Health Services: Prisoners

Volume 504: debated on Monday 18 January 2010

To ask the Secretary of State for Health whether steps have been taken to implement the new minimum target for the national health service of 14 days to transfer a prisoner with acute, severe mental illness to an appropriate health care facility. (311221)

The cross-government delivery plan “Improving Health, Supporting Justice” published in November 2009, sets out the intention to introduce a 14-day transfer process for prisoners with acute, severe mental disorder under section 47 and section 48 of the Mental Health Act 1983.

The Department has set up a prison transfer project to lead on the implementation of 14-day transfers. A national expert advisory group has been established to support the work of the project. This group comprises key stakeholders from the Her Majesty's Prison Service, the national health service, The Royal College of Nursing, the Care Quality Commission, Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Prisons and the Royal College of Psychiatrists.