Intended for healthcare professionals


Prisoners in general hospitals: doctors' attitudes and practice

BMJ 2006; 332 doi: (Published 02 March 2006) Cite this as: BMJ 2006;332:548
  1. Helen Tuite, senior house officer (,
  2. Katherine Browne, senior house officer,
  3. Desmond O'Neill, associate professor
  1. Department of Medical Gerontology, Trinity Centre for Heaiences, Adelaide and Meath Hospital, Dublin 24, Republic of Ireland

    EDITOR—Research into professional conduct towards prisoners being assessed and treated in general hospitals, as opposed to prison settings and psychiatric services,1 2 is lacking. This hospital is near a large prison, and we noted that prisoners were frequently assessed while chained to prison officers. Guidelines from the BMA recommend examination and treatment without restraints, and without prison officers present, unless the risk of escape is high or the prisoner is a threat to himself or herself, the heae team, or others.3 Healthcare teams and prison officers should …

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