Throughcare: Stages in the Provision of a Throughcare Service to Prisoners

Throughcare Map

Integrated Case Management

Effective planning for throughcare requires inter-agency and inter-professional collaboration. The Tripartite Group was established to consider ways of strengthening partnership working between the Scottish Executive, the Scottish Prison Service and local authorities. It was envisaged that this would improve arrangements for the transition of prisoners from custody to the community. The Tripartite Group recommended that the Extended Sentence arrangements/model (SWSG 14/1998) should apply to all prisoners subject to statutory post-release supervision.

National Objectives and Standards note the importance of collaborative work between social work services and SPS. Applying the Extended Sentence model to all statutory throughcare prisoners enhances the role of the supervising officer in SPS processes. It requires the supervising officer to have contact with the prisoner and SPS staff throughout the sentence.

The development of the Integrated Case Management process ensures that SPS staff, social work and other service providers share information and assessments through the IT based system. The SPS electronic database called Prison Records 2 (PR2) is an estate wide database on which the details of all prisoners are recorded. New screens have been developed to support the ICM process, in particular facilitating referrals to other service providers. The outcomes of these referrals, action plans, case conference minutes etc. are all recorded. Prison based social work staff will have access to all these details and will be able to input data directly onto the system.

ICM is based on a case conference model. Case Conferences will assess and manage risk, examine the prisoner's progress and consider what interventions are required to ensure a successful outcome.

Risk Assessments

Social Work, psychology and case co-ordinators who undertake risk assessments during the period of custody will attach the resulting reports directly to the Risk Section of PR2. At this time, they will also make general referrals to relevant service providers, and refer them to the report for further information. Upon receiving the referral, service providers will read the report and use this information to inform their own work with the prisoner.

ICM – Key Roles

  • SPS Link Officers are responsible for Core Screen Assessments which are completed within 72 hours of admission to custody;
  • SPS Case Co-ordinators and Prison Based Social Work are responsible for organising and chairing case conferences and contributing to these;
  • Prison Based Social Work are effectively the link with Community Based Social Work colleagues in ensuring good communication and information exchange;
  • Service Providers will be expected to provide enhanced assessments and direct service provision;
  • Psychological staff will have the same role as other service providers, though additionally they will be expected to provide training on Motivational Interviewing Skills to Personal Officers and training to Case Co-ordinators;
  • Personal Officers will have a role to play in helping motivate the prisoner to engage with service providers, keeping track of the agreed plan/outcomes and supporting the prisoner; and
  • Community Based Social Work will be expected to attend and contribute to the Case Conferences and be the link with the family, community based services and the Prison. Clearly, Community Based Social Work's role continues after the prisoner's release from custody, whereupon they will be required to supervise the individuals' licence/order.



Please note that the contents of Throughcare Map have not been updated since 2009. As a result, certain of the processes described here may no longer be current and accurate. It remains online as an historical resource, but has been superseded by Youth & criminal justice in Scotland: the young person's journey.