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Consultation on healthcare regulation in secure settings

27 March 2015
  • Public

You can have your say on plans to inspect health and social care in prisons and young offender institutions (YOI) as part of our consultation, published today.

The plan covers healthcare provided in immigration removal centres, as well as prisons and YOIs, which accommodate those aged 15-21.

The inspection programme will be carried out in partnership with Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Prisons (HMIP) to protect and promote the interests of people who use health and social care services in secure settings.

The approach brings together elements of HMIP’s criteria for assessing the treatment of detainees and conditions in secure settings, the Royal Colleges* standards for children and young people in secure settings and our operating model, including the five key questions we ask about services.

There are 119 prisons in England and Wales (although CQC does not inspect in Wales) with a total detained population of 85,500 adults. Around five percent of these are women. There are also six YOI.

There is a higher than average rate of ill health among the prison population. Nearly 50 percent of female and 23 percent of male prisoners suffer from anxiety and depression, compared with 19 percent of women and 12 percent of men in the general population.

The nature of detention is that it is largely out of sight of the public and detainees are unable to choose their health or social care provider. These two issues put detainees in a more vulnerable situation. This makes regulation even more important; ensuring the quality of care is same as the rest of the population’s.

While we are already inspecting health and social care in these settings, we are aligning our approach with our revised strategy.

* Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (led), Royal College Psychiatrists, Royal College of Nursing, Royal College of General Practitioners and The Faculty of Public Health.

Last updated:
29 May 2017