Posted 8 months ago on March 28, 2013, 8:26 a.m. EST by GirlFriday
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Despite knowing the psychological pain the RHU imposes, DOC fails to provide prisoners with mental illness in solitary adequate mental health services. Prisoners receive, at best, very brief cell-front contacts from mental health staff. However, many prisoners need far more extensive treatment, which is not provided.
The American Psychiatric Association as well as the National Commission on Correctional Health Care (the accreditation entity for jails and prisons) advocate against housing prisoners with serious mental illness in segregated units like the RHU without an evaluation by mental health professionals to determine whether such placement would be harmful. They further urge that such confinement should last only a few weeks at most and that adequate mental health services be provided to prisoners whatever the setting. While other states’ corrections officials have adopted these standards, Pennsylvania’s have not.
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