Skip to main content
Article thumbnail
Location of Repository

Piloting a new role in mental health: prison based health trainers

By Coral Sirdifield


Prisoners in the UK are in a poor state of health\ud compared to the wider population, often\ud experiencing numerous physical and/or mental\ud health problems. Many prisoners have had little\ud contact with health services, and research suggests\ud that the standard of health care provided in prisons\ud is not equivalent to that provided in the community.\ud This article introduces Care Services Improvement\ud Partnership Health Trainers – an initiative aiming to\ud provide prisoners themselves with the skills to\ud address health inequalities among their peers.\ud Initially, it discusses the origins of these Health\ud Trainers. It then examines prisoners’ views on how\ud training as a Health Trainer has influenced their\ud attitudes and behaviour, and outlines possible\ud implications of providing this kind of training to\ud prisoners in terms of them using their knowledge\ud to influence other prisoners’ mental health

Topics: B760 Mental Health Nursing
Publisher: Pavilion
Year: 2006
OAI identifier:

Suggested articles


  1. (1999). A & Parrish A doi
  2. (1998). A follow-up study of mentally disordered men remanded to prison. doi
  3. (2007). Annual Report 2005–2006.
  4. (2007). Articles in the first issue of the
  5. (2001). Caring for Prisoners: RCN Prison Nurses Forum Roles and Boundaries Project [online]. London: Royal College of Nursing. Available at:
  6. (2001). Changing the Outlook: a strategy for developing and modernising mental health services in prisons. London: Department of Health. doi
  7. (2005). Developing prison health care through reflective practice, Chapter 6. In: Freshwater D & Johns C (eds) Transforming Nursing Through Reflective practice (2nd ed).
  8. (2005). Development and evaluation of a screening tool for identifying prisoners with severe mental illness. doi
  9. (2004). Experience of prison psychiatry: a gap in psychiatrists’ basic professional training. doi
  10. (2005). Findings 248: resettlement outcomes on release from prison in 2003. London: Home Office.
  11. (2005). From Little Acorns: the mental health service user movement [online]. In:
  12. Health (1999b) The Future Organisation of Prison Health Care. London: Department of Health. doi
  13. Health (2004a) The 10 Essential Shared Capabilities: a framework for the whole of the mental health workforce. London: Department of Health. doi
  14. Health (2004b) The NHS Knowledge and Skills Framework (NHS KSF) and the development review process).
  15. (2006). HMIP (2006a) Report on an unannounced full follow-up inspection
  16. (2006). HMIP (2006b) Report on an unannounced full follow-up inspection of
  17. (2006). Improving the Health and Social Outcomes of People Recently Released from Prisons in the UK: a perspective from primary care. London: SCMH. Available at: KML/$file/scmh_health_care_after_prison.pdf
  18. (2003). Influence of environmental factors on mental health within prisons: focus group study. doi
  19. (2000). Inpatient care of mentally ill people in prison: results of a year's programme of semi-structured inspections. doi
  20. (2004). Joint Committee On Human Rights - minutes of evidence - examination of witnesses
  21. (2006). London’s Prison Mental Health Services: a review. London: SCMH. Available at:
  22. (2003). Mental health care in prisons. doi
  23. (2006). Mental health in prisons: Sainsbury Centre for Mental Health Lecture,15
  24. (2002). Mental Health Policy Implementation Guide: community mental health teams. London: Department of Health. doi
  25. (2000). Nursing in Prisons: report by the working group considering the development of prison nursing, with particular reference to health care officers. London: Department of Health.
  26. (1999). Nursing in Secure Environments: a scoping study conducted on behalf of the UKCC by the faculty of health,
  27. (2005). Offender Mental Health Care Pathway. doi
  28. (2006). Parliamentary Group on Prison Health
  29. (1996). Patient or Prisoner.
  30. (2006). Pavilion Journals (Brighton) LtdEquivalent to what?
  31. (2006). Pavilion Journals (Brighton) LtdEquivalent to what? Mental health care in Britain's prisons Revolving Doors Agency
  32. (2001). Prevalence of mental health disorder in female remand prisoners. doi
  33. (2001). Prison health care: developing leadership through clinical supervision.
  34. (2006). Prison population and accommodation briefing for 22nd
  35. (2005). Prison population and accommodation briefing for 23rd
  36. (2001). Psychiatric morbidity among adults living in private households, doi
  37. (1998). Psychiatric morbidity among prisoners in England and Wales. London: Office for National Statistics. doi
  38. (2000). Psychiatric Morbidity Amongst Young Offenders in England and Wales. London: Office for National Statistics. doi
  39. (2002). Reducing Reoffending by Ex-prisoners. London: Social Exclusion Unit.
  40. (2004). Reducing Reoffending National Action Plan. London: Home Office.
  41. (2005). Reoffending of Adults: results from the 2002 cohort – Home Office Statistical Bulletin,
  42. (2005). Report on a Full Announced Inspection of HM Young Offender Institution Feltham,
  43. (2003). Report on a New Prison Health Reception Screening Arrangement: the result of a pilot study of 10 prisons.
  44. (2003). Report on full announced inspection of HM prison Lewes,
  45. (2006). Reviewing the Care Programme Approach 2006: a consultation document. London: Department of Health.
  46. (2004). Service (NOMS) doi
  47. (1997). Services for mentally disordered offenders. Chapter 5.6. In:
  48. (2004). Suicide by prisoners: national clinical survey. doi
  49. (1999). The Future Organisation of Prison Health Care. London: Department of Health.
  50. (2002). The interface between general and prison psychiatry – the consultants perception. doi
  51. (2003). The resettlement of short-term prisoners: an evaluation of seven Pathfinders - doi
  52. (2002). The role of the nurse in prison health care, chapter 2. In: Norman A & Parrish (eds) Prison Nursing. doi
  53. (2005). Troubled Inside: responding to the mental health needs of men in prison. London: Prison Reform Trust.
  54. (2003). Troubled Inside: responding to the mental health needs of women in prison. London: Prison Reform Trust.
  55. (1997). Women in Prison: a thematic review.
  56. (2005). World Health Organisation & International Red Cross doi

To submit an update or takedown request for this paper, please submit an Update/Correction/Removal Request.