Prison Mental Health in Portugal: Letter to the Editor about the WHO Status Report on Prison Health

To the Editor,
Prison health has received significant attention following the launch of the World Health Organization’s Status Report on Prison Health in the WHO European Region 2022 last February.1 The Status Report (SR) recognizes several health issues in the prison systems across Europe, such as overcrowding, limited access to hepatitis C treatment, and poor continuity of care.1 It identifies mental health disorders (MHD) as the primary cause of morbidity in European prisons, with an estimated prevalence rate of 32.8%, compared with 13.1% in the general community.1 Additionally, the report classifies suicide as the leading cause of death within prisons.1 After discussing general considerations, the SR examines the prison health care scenario in each country. The document coincides with several concerns being raised about the quality of health care in Portuguese prisons, specifically regarding mental health (MH).2

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