The case for improving the health of ex-prisoners

Am J Public Health. 2014 Aug;104(8):1352-5. doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2014.301883. Epub 2014 Jun 12.


The global prison population exceeds 10 million and continues to grow; more than 30 million people are released from custody annually. These individuals are disproportionately poor, disenfranchised, and chronically ill. There are compelling, evidence-based arguments for improving health outcomes for ex-prisoners on human rights, public health, criminal justice, and economic grounds. These arguments stand in stark contrast to current policy and practice in most settings. There is also a dearth of evidence to guide clinicians and policymakers on how best to care for this large and growing population during and after their transition from custody to community. Well-designed longitudinal studies, clinical trials, and burden of disease studies are pivotal to closing this evidence gap.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Delivery of Health Care*
  • Global Health
  • Health Status
  • Human Rights
  • Humans
  • Prisoners*
  • Public Health
  • Safety