Prison Healthcare

Northern Ireland has three prisons Magilligan, Maghaberry and Hydebank Wood College. In 2008 The South Eastern Health and Social Care Trust (SEHSCT) started providing the healthcare in all prison sites. There are 130 staff working throughout all healthcare disciplines.

Project Echo will create an opportunity to help build a community of practitioners providing best patient care, through sharing of best practice, Hub specialist advice and reflective learning. By enabling a multidisciplinary group of healthcare and prison staff to meet at each spoke, it will engender an integrated approach to patient care across specialities and health and justice. It will also enable a combined approach and a standardisation of best care across the three N.I. prison estates. The sessions will aim to build expertise in front line staff, and meet the need for specialty care in the prison population.

Multidisciplinary teams from other UK prisons acting as spokes in the ECHO project will be an innovative way to share best practice. It will enable a collective approach to problem solving in prison healthcare and broaden the knowledge of the Northern Ireland prison teams. This will be a platform for future collaborative research and education and if evaluated as beneficial to patients and staff be replicated in other prison settings.

From December to March, this ECHO network aims to provide teaching on the following four themes:

  • Palliative Care
  • Blood Borne Viruses
  • Chronic Respiratory Diseases
  • Sexual Health and Harm Reduction.

Hub Facilitators


Ruth Gray is a senior dentist in South Eastern Trust. She is a specialist in Special Care Dentistry and has a keen interest in the oral health needs of marginalised populations and the oral health effects of substance misuse. She specialises in research and service improvements in prison health care.
Ruth is an executive committee member of the National Association of Prison Dentistry UK and the European Federation of Prison Health.

Paul Donaghy image

Paul Donaghy

Paul Donaghy

Paul Donaghy has been a leader in cutting edge adult and staff education and training initiatives within Northern Ireland over the past 20 years, primarily but not exclusively within the Health & Social Care sector.
He is an experienced adult learning facilitator, focussing on unleashing the talent of those who work in the statutory, voluntary and community sectors and has evidenced how better collaborative and partnership working across agencies leads to better individual and social outcomes, at lower cost.
He has held a number of public appointments in Equality and Human Rights bodies in N.I. and seeks to tackle inequality through empowering and enabling adults to use the power of learning to transform lives and transform organisations.


1st December – Palliative / End of Life Care

15th December – Palliative / End of Life Care

12th January – BBV’s

26th January – BBV’s

9th February – BBV’s

23rd February – Self Harm

9th March – Self Harm

23rd March – Self Harm

6th April – NPS