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Previous studies have found that the health of people in the correctional system is generally poorer than in the general population.
This summary focuses on information collected from prison entrants. A prison entrant is someone who entered prison during the 2-week period in which the National Prisoner Health Census was conducted. From this information, a picture of the health of Australia's prison population can be determined.
For more information see The health of Australia's prisoners (2011).
prison entrants are male.
prison entrants are Indigenous.
prison entrants have not studied past Year 10.
prison entrants have a chronic health condition.
Asthma was the most common condition.
prison entrants are smokers.
This is over 4 times the rate of the general population.
prison entrants used illicit drugs in the 12 months prior to prison.
prison entrants drank alcohol at risky levels before prison.
This was nearly 3 in 4 for Indigenous prisoners.
prison entrants reported having a mental health disorder. For female prison entrants, this rate was 4 in 10.
Around half were taking medication for their disorder.
prison entrants experienced high or very high levels of psychological distress in the four weeks prior to prison entry.