A history of the NSW Prison Medical Service – can you contribute?

  • A/Prof Kath Weston and A/Prof Louella McCarthy, curators of the Caring for the Incarcerated exhibition about the history of prison medicine. The exhibition was held at the University of Wollongong in 2017
    A/Prof Kath Weston and A/Prof Louella McCarthy, curators of the Caring for the Incarcerated exhibition about the history of prison medicine. The exhibition was held at the University of Wollongong in 2017

Photo: Greg Farmer

By
Kath Weston
School of Medicine, University of Wollongong
Issue

Researchers are looking into the history of the New South Wales prison medical service from 1788 to 1992, and are seeking to get in touch with health professionals and others who have had connections with the service in the past. Many prisons are and were located in rural parts of New South Wales, and the research team is keen to learn more about how medical services, including nursing and allied health, have been provided to rural New South Wales prisons over time.

The research team is a collaborative one from the University of Wollongong School of Medicine, Western Sydney University School of Nursing & Midwifery, and New South Wales Department of Justice Health and Forensic Mental Health.  

As New South Wales has one of the oldest prison medical services in the world, this research offers a unique perspective for better understanding current issues in prison-related health, and focuses specifically on the philosophy of service delivery to the prisoner population and how that philosophy has informed policy and models of care.

The research team is interested in contacting members of health professions who may have had past experiences working in the New South Wales prison medical system, or who may have some insight from older relatives who have been involved in prison health in New South Wales in the past.

They would like to talk with you about your memories of changes and events that occurred and to explore any memorabilia you might have (such as photos, equipment or diaries).

To get involved contact Associate Professor Louella McCarthy (louella@uow.edu.au, 02 4221 5470) or Associate Professor Kathryn Weston (kathw@uow.edu.au, 02 4221 5633) at the School of Medicine, University of Wollongong.

 

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