BMC Global and Public Health is calling for submissions to our Collection on addressing public health concerns in incarceration and community correction.
The criminal legal system has the largest concentration of individuals with unmet health needs that affect their citizenship, productivity, and quality of life. There is an increasing interest on the part of governments worldwide to address those health needs in the criminal justice system. These health needs are disproportionately high, as much research has indicated. Public health bodies often assess health needs in police stations, courts, prisons, or probation/community corrections services. In some countries, public health agencies are commissioning healthcare services in the criminal justice system. Trauma is a common experience of justice-involved people hence the extremely high rates of substance use and mental illness compared to the general population. Suicide is another serious issue confronting prisons and probation/community corrections services. In most European countries, suicide rates in these settings are not recorded. However, rates are estimated to be six times higher for men and 30 times higher for women than the general population. There are also serious physical health challenges in some settings; for example, the WHO has demonstrated that TB and other infectious diseases and dental problems have an unusually high prevalence in prisons worldwide. Attempts to address public health issues in countries worldwide have been variable, but excellent research has taken place.
To capture national efforts and novel approaches in this multi-disciplinary area, BMC Global and Public Health is pleased to announce a call for papers for our upcoming collection entitled ‘Addressing public health concerns in Incarceration and community corrections,’ guest edited by Dr. Ingrid A. Binswanger from Kaiser Permanente Colorado and Dr. Charlie Brooker from Royal Holloway, University of London. We envision that this work will inform future research, frameworks, intervention development, and policy.
We are now inviting the submission of Research, Comment, Review, and Opinion articles of outstanding interest covering the breadth of multi-disciplinary studies and advances, ranging from observational to interventional, that are focused on:
● Novel interventions or approaches to highly prevalent illnesses within any aspect of the criminal justice system, including, for example, the use of volunteers; access to dentistry; testing for TB or other infectious diseases
● Outcome studies focusing on dual diagnosis (psychosis and substance misuse or learning disability and substance misuse)
● Methodological papers discussing ways of improving quantitative/quasi-experimental research in prisons or community settings or qualitative studies that better illuminate health concerns
● The impact of suicide prevention strategies
● Studies that evaluate approaches to coordinating/integrating healthcare from prison to the community
● The use of court diversion to mental health services instead of a prison sentence
● Systematic reviews or meta-analyses
We encourage work from local, regional, national, and global partnerships and collaboration among multi-disciplinary scientists using multiple methodologies. We ask that authors be careful to use non-stigmatizing/preferred language in their manuscripts as outlined in relevant language guidelines for their respective fields.
Image credit: Udo Herrmann / CHROMORANGE / picture alliance