Immigrants: Detainees

Department of Health and Social Care written question – answered on 18th March 2019.

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Photo of Gill Furniss Gill Furniss Shadow Minister (Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy) (Steel, Postal Affairs and Consumer Protection)

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps are taken to ensure that people in immigration removal centres have uninterrupted access to prescribed medication.

Photo of Jackie Doyle-Price Jackie Doyle-Price The Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Health and Social Care

NHS England’s focus on improving the physical needs of this patient population have resulted in the development of a dedicated medicine improvement programme for those in an immigration removal centre (IRC).

The programme aims to improve the optimisation of medicines for people in immigration removal centres and has been underpinned by specific professional medicines optimisation standards published in partnership with the Royal Pharmaceutical Society (2017).

The programme aims to improve the optimisation of medicines for people in IRCs to deliver:

- A clear understanding of current provision of pharmacy services, including on-site services, and medicines handling and use in IRCs;

- An audit of the medicines standards in all IRCs to support quality improvement in pharmacy services and medicines optimisation;

- Identification of key improvement priorities for each IRC based on the gap analysis between provision and expected standards;

- Introduction by providers of policies and an IT-based risk assessment tools to enable as many detainees as possible to self-administer their medicines;

- Provide medicines in an environment where people can maintain confidentiality and access support from pharmacy staff about their medicines; and

- Improve continuity of medicines on admission through more effective electronic recording during their period of detention in IRCs as well as on their release and transfer or deportation.

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