The Italian Society for Prison Health and Medicine (SIMSPe-Onlus) is a scientific national-based organization whose objectives are addressed to the assistance, medicine and health-care in prison, considered as a field of study, research and theoretical-practical education. Founded in 2000, the SIMSPe bases its mission on developing the acknowledgement of Penitentiary Health and Medicine as a subject of study, research and theoretical-practical didactics. Some main topics can resume the Society’s purposes.
The SIMSPe-Onlus, composed by 400 members mainly physicians and medical staff and managed by a steering and a scientific committee, pursues the lifelong learning and training of medical personnel dealing with health in prison. Together they promote the creation of a Specialized Penitentiary Health School, in order to prepare physicians to face health problems which daily affect inmates. Particularly keen and active at international level, the SIMSPe in 2012 launched an EU Conference on Infectious Diseases, Harm Reduction Policies and Human Rights in Prison, which saw the intervention of more than 100 delegates from the most representative human rights organizations in prisons, medical detention departments, public administrators, political actors, stakeholders and health organizations at European level.
The SIMSPe-Onlus, founding member of the European Federation for Prison Health ‘Health Without Barriers (HWBs) and leading Presidency until 2016, counts many prestigious collaborations with the Health in Prison Programme (HIPP) from the World Health Organization (WHO/EU Office), several EU Prison Bodies as the Spanish SESP, the French APSEP, the Public Health England (PHE), The Swiss Conference for Prison Health, the Dutch Prison Services and Universities like Birmingham City University, La Sapienza, Università della Tuscia Cattolica del S. Cuore and Tor Vergata Universities in Rome, University of Sassari, Molise University, and Magna Grecia University in Catanzaro.
As co-promoter of the REHAB project, together with the UNITUS, the SIMSPe will be proactively involved in all the activities carried out for the successful results of the project. Its main contribution to the REHAB will be to lead and launch, in parallel and collaboration with the SESP the implementation of the Communication and Training Trial (WP3) core activity of the REHAB Project, applied in two detention institutes Madrid and Viterbo. The latter is already engaged in the daily activity of the SIMSPe at local level.
Like for the other project partners, the SIMSPe will be involved in the Coordination (WP1), in the Design of methodology and modules for training and communication trial (WP2), in the Evaluation and format release (WP4), contributing in the Quality Plan (WP5), in the Exploitation of results (WP6) and the Dissemination activities (WP7).