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The pandemic in prison: interventions and overisolation


  • Sérgio Garófalo de Carvalho Universidade Federal da Bahia
  • Ivete Maria Santos Federal University of Bahia
  • Andreia Beatriz Silva dos Santos State University of Feira de Santana



Prisons, Prisoners, SARS-CoV-2, COVID-19 pandemic


Prisional health is, in its essence, public health. The COVID-19 pandemic poses a great threat to the world and has shown that preventing the disease escalation in prisons integrates the novel corona virus clash in society in general. Up to this moment, the most effective known measure to curb the disease spread is social isolation. Nevertheless, in penal institutions, often overcrowded, social isolation becomes difficult to carry out and, when it happens, it takes the enclosed population to overisolation, with consequences to their mental health. Besides, prisoners suffer with clogged up environment, lack of materials for personal hygiene, poor basic sanitary conditions and difficulties in accessing health services. In order to reduce the disease spread, several countries are taking measures such as definite or temporary release of prisoners and visiting restrictions. This paper deals with a narrative review on the pandemic effects in prisons and how government and civil society have organized themselves in order to reduce the disease consequences at those places. The text has been divided into three sections: the first with literature review on the current health theme; the second discusses how different countries have been dealing with the prison situation in the pandemic context, and, the last part focuses on how the Brazilian Penal System has reacted to the new disease.


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How to Cite

Carvalho, S. G. de, Santos, I. M., & Santos, A. B. S. dos. (2020). The pandemic in prison: interventions and overisolation. In SciELO Preprints.


Health Sciences