romania title

Prison Conditions in Romania

Prison services at a country level are administered by the Ministry of Justice, starting prior world war II. In the whole country it is possible to find 34 prisons, 2 detention centers, 2 educational centers and 6 prison hospitals.

Understaffing is still one of the main issue, if the general occupancy rate in the prison system is 80%, with 12,143 hired posts out of 15.041, in the case of health care staff it is only 70%. Consequently an overloading of health care staff is experienced, with around 850.000 medical consultations per year and an average of 30 consultations per prisoner. To conclude the facilities are old and overcrowded, and because of inadequate conditions of detention, the number of the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) decisions against Romania has increased by more than 30 times in 2016, compared to 2012, with 1,624,670 euro payed only in 2016, out of the amount of 3,132,429 euro payed in 1999-2016. In this regard, under threat of The Pilot Judgement, a memoranda was signed in 2016 with the promise to build 10,895 new detention places and modernize 1,651 old ones, costing 500 mill euro, until 2023 and hire 5,847 new personnel, costing 250 mill euro.

Prisoners are integrated in the national health insurance system, which have agreements with prison hospitals, indeed every inmate is insured and has the right to heath services similar to the general population: they have access to primary care in the local prison, dental care in prison, ambulatory care in the local nearby clinics, hospital care in prison and ambulance service. When this services are not available or when a detained need emergency care, is it possible to take prisoners outside the prison to go hospital or other institutions. Prisoners are entitled to health care and drugs free of charge. The list of drugs is support by the health insurance, if not the prison system supported by the state budget will provide them. In fact the fund for prison health care are provided by the nation health insurance funds and by the State budget. Prison doctors are recognized as family doctors, according to an order of the Ministry of Health. All the health stuff including dentists and nurses are hired by prison administration.

The main cause of death in 2016 were neoplazic, cardio-vascular diseases, cirrhosis, AIDS and neurological disorder. Compared to those, death caused by self-harm and drugs ingestion represent only a small percentage. Positively, deaths due to violence have dropped by more than 50% compared to 2012.