Worldwide Prison Health Research & Engagement Network (WEPHREN)


There is marked disparity in research capacity and outputs between countries across the world and the network aims to address this, aiming to ensure that the main beneficiaries of the network will be resource poor countries.

The Worldwide Prison Health Research & Engagement Network (WEPHREN) was established by WHO Europe with the UK Collaborating Centre for Health in Prisons Programme (HIPP), hosted by Public Health England.

The aim of WEPHREN is to develop a global network to exchange experience, expert advice and promote innovation in addressing the health and healthcare inequalities faced by people in prison.

The Justice Health Unit has an ongoing role in WEPHREN’s development and expansion. Justice Health staff are members of the WEPHREN Steering Committee, comprised of experts in the field who meet quarterly to review the delivery plan for WEPHREN as well as providing advice and support to the WHO UK Collaborating Centre in delivering WEPHREN’s objectives.

An example of our collaboration and engagement was a recent submission to the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) Commission on Equity and Health Inequalities in the Americas. This submission was prepared by a group of international collaborators with expertise in health in custodial settings (including WEPHREN members) and led by the Justice Health Unit. A summary of this submission is available on the WEPHREN website, and the full submission is available to download online.