Hundreds of ambulances called out to Perth Prison
The Conservative politician said: “Prisons need to be absolutely secure and safe environments for both inmates and staff.
“It would be unrealistic to expect there to be no incidents, but it’s extremely worrying to discover that ambulances are having to attend 999 calls on such a regular basis.
“Obviously, some of these ambulance call outs will be for incidents unrelated to prisoner disorder and this should be recognised.
“However, a significant number will be as a result of violence inside with a number considered life-threatening, so it’s clear that security needs to improve inside Scotland’s jails.
“Paramedics are under enough pressure without having to make these trips into Scotland’s prison estate.
“I hope the SNP government can offer more support to the Scottish Prison Service to ensure there are far fewer incidents to which ambulances have to respond in future.”
But a spokesperson for the Scottish Prison Service said: “There are almost 8000 people in custody everyday across Scotland, with a range of complex health needs and the health and wellbeing of these individuals is a primary concern for the Scottish Prison Service. The Scottish Priosn Service has defended its protocols after concerns were raised about the number of ambulance call outs to Perth Prison “The Scottish Prison Service always follows protocols and directions agreed with the NHS, to ensure those in custody receive the appropriate care and treatment from healthcare professionals.”
A spokesperson for the Scottish Government said: “Our prisons are dealing with increasingly challenging populations - up to 8000 people are in the care of the prison estate, with a range of complex health needs including substance misuse. While any one incident is one too many, we should never take for granted that Scotland’s prisons in general remain safe, stable and secure