Written answers

Thursday, 24 October 2019

Department of Justice and Equality

Prison Mental Health Services

Photo of Jim O'CallaghanJim O'Callaghan (Dublin Bay South, Fianna Fail)
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140. To ask the Tánaiste and Minister for Justice and Equality the number of prisoners who sought psychological services to date in 2019; the percentage who were given access to those services; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [44149/19]

Photo of Charles FlanaganCharles Flanagan (Laois, Fine Gael)
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I am advised that the Irish Prison Service Psychology Service provides tailored psychological assessment and intervention services for people in custody. Their primary focus is in relation to mental health and personality disorder difficulties, and other offence related needs.

I am informed that the Service operates an open referral system, in that referrals are accepted from all sources including self-referrals, referrals from family members, Irish Prison Service staff and inreach/community services.

I am informed that between 1 January 2019 to 21 October 2019, a total of 1,260 people were referred to the Irish Prison Service Psychology Service. Where appropriate, a psychological care plan is developed based on the Irish Prison Service Psychology Service stepped model of care. This aims to ensure the most effective and appropriate treatment is delivered, based on identified need, and includes evidence-based primary, secondary and tertiary care interventions.

I am advised by the Irish Prison Service that the information requested by the Deputy, on the percentage given access, is not readily available and would require a manual examination of records. Such an examination would require a disproportionate amount of staff time.


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