15 May 2009

Call for more resources for prison mental health services

9:12 am on 15 May 2009

A top forensic psychiatrist says mental health services for prisoners need a major injection of resources to cope with the rise in inmate numbers.

Dr Sandy Simpson, of the Auckland regional forensic psychiatry service, says the needs of mental health services for prisoners in the northern region have been worked out on a lower inmate forecast than the actual rise in prison numbers.

Unless services are significantly enhanced he says there could be widespread, unmet mental health needs in the prison population.

The Ministry of Health says it is waiting for the Budget on 28 May.