More than 50 practitioners from prison services shared the current situation, the needs, the practices and recommendations on how to address the issues related to mental illness, aging and palliative care among prisoners.
On the 6th and 7th February 2017, the partners of the MenACE project, including representatives from prison administrations of Romania, Belgium, Portugal, Norway and Belgium met in Bucharest, Romania.
Worldwide more than 10.35 million people are currently being held in penal institutions and the global prison population rate is increasing. Mental illness is especially prevalent in prison populations, by far exceeding the rate of mental disorders in the general population. These mental health issues are exacerbated with age: over 20% of adults aged 60 and over suffer from a mental or neurological disorder. As the world’s population ages rapidly, so too the number of the elderly in jails and prisons is increasing at an exponential rate: at a rate 3 times that of the general prison population.
Given this framework, the MenACE project aims to increase the response to mental health disorders within prisons and the quality of palliative and end of life care services provided by enhancing the competences of management and frontline staff to address prisoners’ mental health needs and the special needs of older prisoners.
The project partnership involves Hospice Casa Sperantei (Romania), Administratia Nationala a Penitentiarelor (Romania), DGRSP-Portuguese Prison Service, Service Public Federal Justice (Belgium), Helse Bergen Haukeland University Hospital (Norway), EUROPRIS European Organisation of Prison and Correctional Services (Netherlands), BSAFE LAB Law Enforcement, Justice and Public Safety Lab of Beira Interior University and IPS Innovative Prison Systems (Portugal).