§ Mr. Michael Forsyth
[holding answer 3 May 1995]: Responsibility for this matter has been delegated to the Director General of the Prison Service, who has been asked to arrange for a reply to be given.
Letter from Derek Lewis to Mr. Paul Flynn, dated 4 May 1995:The Home Secretary has asked me to reply to your recent Question on how many prisoners received medical treatment in each of the past 10 years (a) within prisons or (b) transferred to outside hospitals for the symptoms of drug misuse.The information requested is not recorded centrally and could be obtained only at disproportionate cost. All Prison Service establishments provide detoxification, education and counselling facilities to prisoners with drug misuse problems through the health care centre, probation department or community drug agencies.As part of the new Prison Service drugs strategy, published on 25 April 1995, all prison governors are required to develop and implement local drug strategies which will form part of their contract with their area manager. The local strategies will include provision for education, treatment and throughcare for prisoners who misuse. have misused, or are at risk of misusing drugs.This year the Prison Service will be greatly expanding the number and types of drug treatment programmes. These programmes include therapeutic communities, 3-month treatment programmes, intensive counselling and education services, detoxification units and community linked throughcare programmes. Careful monitoring and evaluation of these programmes will help to determine the development of drug treatment in other establishments.