Overview

The AIHW currently collects data on the health of prisoners in Australia through a national survey of public and private prisons. Prisoners have higher levels of mental health problems, risky alcohol consumption, tobacco smoking, illicit drug use, chronic disease and communicable diseases than the general population. This means that prisoners have significant and complex health needs, which are often long-term or chronic in nature.

More reports and statistics on prisoners can be found under Youth justice.

Featured reports

Latest findings

1 in 3 prison entrants had an education level of Year 9 or below

3 in 4 prison entrants are current smokers

2 in 3 women in prison have a history of a mental health condition

More than 7 in 10 (72%) women entering prison had previously been incarcerated

Almost one-quarter (24%) of women entering prison were unemployed in the 30 days prior to incarceration

2 in 3 (65%) women reported that they had received a mental health diagnosis before entering prison

Highlights