All persons in prison, resident within Buckinghamshire, Bracknell Forest, and Windsor and Maidenhead, with class A drug problems and associated social issues. The service is aimed at individuals who have stayed abstinent whilst on remand or in prison, and are looking for on-going support to stay off drugs. SMART's experience is that unless people get help when they are released, they are likely to relapse into drug taking and reoffending.
To provide support, advice and care planning prior to and after release from prison, to new and existing clients.
Prison Link runs in Buckinghamshire, Bracknell Forest, and Windsor and Maidenhead.
A SMART prison link worker will meet with the client while they are in court or in prison to offer advice and support. An assessment is carried out and an initial care plan, ready to be activated on release, is agreed with the client.
On release the client is met in the community and escorted to any arranged appointments (for example prescribing, probation, housing appointments). Clients will continue to receive support from a Prison Link worker until their careplan is complete, which normally takes up to six weeks.
They are actively encouraged to develop long term action plans to bring positive changes in their lives. This might include pursuing training and employment opportunities.
Through the programme clients are also offered support to deal with minor relapses, and introductions to housing providers and other community agencies to boost their chance for success.
A high proportion of individuals using the Prison Link service say that the outcomes they have achieved are the result of their contact with a SMART Prison Link worker.
Prison Link actively supports recently released prisoners back into the community and helps them turn their lives around.
In the past prisoners, who are supported in prison by prison Healthcare agencies, have not always been able to access clinical support in the community when they are released.
As part of the Prison Link service, clients' prescription charts are now routinely requested from the Prison Healthcare, prior to release, so that a community appointment can be booked and continuity maintained.