I worked as a prison nurse for 12 years before working in a strategic prison role at the Dept. of Health in London and now as the Royal College of Nursing professional lead in this area of practice.
There are many challenges we face together but I have seen some superb work by nurses and others in our prisons which often go unrecognised. Working in prisoner healthcare is an amazing career choice and one area that you can learn a great deal from to improve your skills too. Whichever area of nursing you come from there is something you can offer this population of people in our society. We all have a moral, ethical and professional responsibility to support those whose are often underserved in health terms. We need to step away from the stereotypical ideology of people in prison as ‘bad criminals’ they are also people who have often experienced trauma, abuse and neglect through their lives. As one politician once said (and I agree) ‘Their History is NOT their Destiny’ .
Consider prison nursing if you want to develop and help improve society.
Ann Norman, Royal College of Nursing, UK.