I have been ill for a few days. I think I have a cold and my whole body feels tired and heavy … Normally people go to Healthcare and they give an appointment in 2 weeks. 2 weeks! I might be better by then! This time I put my name on the paper but I am still waiting for them to give me an appointment. I can’t buy any medicine here; they just give me paracetamol, but that doesn’t help. I have to take it in the office and they watch me drinking it. It tastes horrible! Even my visitors can’t bring me medicine because that’s not allowed.
I have seen some people here who are sick and here they get really bad. Some people have heart and kidney problems. One man had a stroke and half of his body doesn’t work. That happened in here.
Laura: Excerpts from the Independent Monitoring Board’s 2011 Annual Report of Harmondsworth show the extent of the problems with Healthcare: ‘During the year there have been numerous examples of detainees experiencing difficulties with healthcare [...] The HMCIP Report of 2010 had identified healthcare as “unacceptably poor” requiring “urgent attention” and made 60 recommendations.’ (pp 11,12)
Independent Monitoring Board. March 2012. ‘Harmondsworth Immigration Removal Centre Annual Report 2011