Staff blow whis­tle on health­care at pri­son

Sunday Sun - - News - By Laura Hill laura.hill@reach­plc.com

Lo­cal democ­racy re­porter HEALTH­CARE staff at HMP Fran­k­land were so con­cerned about the care of pris­on­ers that they blew the whis­tle to the author­i­ties.

And Care Qual­ity Com­mis­sion (CQC) in­spec­tors found health­care at the high se­cu­rity jail was not well man­aged and pa­tients were not in­volved in mak­ing de­ci­sions about their care and treat­ment.

The pri­son, near the vil­lage of Bras­side in County Durham, counts se­rial killers, rapists, mur­der­ers and ter­roists among its list of in­mates. It’s now so no­to­ri­ous that it’s dubbed “Mon­ster Man­sion”.

G4S pro­vides health­care at the pri­son and CQC in­spec­tors found risks to pa­tients were not ad­e­quately as­sessed by staff. In­spec­tors said in a re­port: “Man­agers did not demon­strate they had the ex­pe­ri­ence, ca­pa­bil­ity and skills to de­liver a high-qual­ity and sus­tain­able health­care ser­vice. They did not al­ways work ef­fec­tively with front-line staff to pro­vide con­sis­tent lead­er­ship.”

The in­spec­tors found the ser­vice was short staffed, with seven va­can­cies in the team when they vis­ited the jail in May.

They also found there were some­times de­lays in get­ting stocks of med­i­cal sup­plies into the pri­son due to se­cu­rity ar­range­ments, and poli­cies around pris­on­ers hold­ing medicines for them­selves weren’t al­ways fol­lowed.

The CQC told G4S to im­prove the gov­er­nance and man­age­ment of the ser­vice and to in­volve pris­on­ers more in de­ci­sion-mak­ing about their care.

Sue Cle­ments, G4S’ health ser­vices North East pris­ons di­rec­tor, said: “G4S Health Ser­vices de­liv­ers qual­ity health­care in cen­tres and es­tab­lish­ments across the UK and in­spec­tors found that our staff at HMP Fran­k­land treat pa­tients with kind­ness, re­spect and com­pas­sion.

“We take the con­cerns raised around record­ing and mon­i­tor­ing prac­tices very se­ri­ously and have taken prompt ac­tions to en­sure that we are com­pli­ant with those re­quire­ments, in­clud­ing bring­ing in a new head of health­care with over 20 years’ ex­pe­ri­ence.”

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