The health of Australia's prisoners 2009 (AIHW)

The health of Australia's prisoners 2009 is the culmination of several years' development of national indicators in relation to prisoner health in Australia. This first national report shows that prisoners in Australia have poor health compared to the general community. A week-long snapshot of prison entrants in Australia during 2009 showed: · 25% had a chronic condition (such as asthma, cardiovascular disease or diabetes) · 81% were current smokers; 52% consumed alcohol at risky levels; and 71% had used illicit drugs during the previous 12 months · 37% of prison entrants reported having received a mental health diagnosis at some time; 43% had received a head injury resulting in a loss of consciousness; and 31% had been referred to prison mental health services.

The report also contains data relating to communicable diseases, educational attainment, deaths in custody, the use of health services and the types of medications used by prisoners.

Media release

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