The Medical Justice Max Appeal
Transform our ability to produce medical evidence of the toxic effect of immigration detention on health
Financial appeal for Max, a computer system that will enable better case management of victims of torture and sick detainees. Max will deliver robust, independent evidence that can be used to defend the human rights of detainees and improve their circumstances.
Medical Justice casework needs a lot of data management, and our campaigning and litigation work relies on meticulously researched information. Our work is highly regarded yet few know that we have been struggling along with no computer system. We deal with 1,000 detainees a year and we are the only organisation that focuses on the provision of healthcare in detention. This means our casework records form a vast and unique repository of medical evidence which could be used to challenge inadequate healthcare in detention, but we have had no automated method to extract the data.
So we developed Max, a computer system which will enable us to analyse our data in a fraction of the time it takes us now. Max will allow us to identify trends and document abuses very quickly so that we can draw attention to issues real-time rather than several months later. Dr Charmian Goldwyn (see photos) will not have to plough through arch-lever files for data anymore. Max will also allow us to be more efficient in assisting individual detainees, by storing their data reliably and in an easily accessible form, while maintaining strict confidentiality.
Even though the cost of Max is high relative to the size of Medical Justice, in the end our trustees felt the question was more of how we could justify not developing a system like Max. We feel the investment is very worthwhile and will serve the aims of Medical Justice for years to come. How else could we store, manage and analyse such large amounts of complex information. Members of the Network for Social Change agreed and have generously donated £16,887 towards Max. We urgently need to raise the rest ; £23,057.
All contributions, big or small, are urgently needed and very gratefully received - giving options include ;
1. Make a donation (preferably a monthly if you can) via our JustGiving Max Appeal page, which deals with GiftAid automatically
2. Hold a fundraising "event" for Max - e.g. instead of presents for his birthday this year, Dr Jonathan Fluxman (Chair of Medical Justice) is asking friends, family and supporters to donate towards Max instead. We can help you set up a JustGiving webpage.
3. Cover the cost of a Max module listed at the bottom of this page
4. Send a cheque and/or a completed standing order mandate to Medical Justice, 86 Durham Road, London, N7 7DT.
5. Make an electronic transfer to our bank account - Lloyds TSB, High Holborn Branch, Sort Code: 309425, Account No: 00859422
Very many sincere thanks in advance for helping us get Max
Contact : firstname.lastname@example.org / Phone : 07904 778365
What Medical Justice does
We challenge inadequate healthcare provision in immigration detention and organise for independent doctors to visit detainees. We deal detainees who include torture victims, pregnant women, and people with communicable diseases. Some suffer from disability, mental illness, and terminal illness. Some detainees are denied medication and appropriate access to hospital. Medical Justice facilitates access to independent medical and legal advice. Most detainees we assist get released and many get leave to remain in the UK. Medical Justice has 4 paid workers who work with a dedicated team of about 40 regular volunteer doctors.
What Max does
Max is a system for the management of detainees' cases and related data by their independent doctors, Medical Justice staff and authorised volunteers. Dozens of documents on each detainee's case will be loaded in to Max, including medico-legal reports written by independent doctors we have sent in to visit detainees, as well as medical records from detention centres, hospitals and GP surgeries in the community. In addition, we will enter hundreds of pieces of data into case profiles. This means on Max we will be able to interrogate all the case profiles, instantly, creating basic anonymised statistics about detainees in detention, the medical abuse they are subjected to in detention, and the toxic effect on their health.
The anonymous statistics can be augmented by manual review of case documents for a deeper analysis of a given issue, improving our audit and research capabilities dramatically. Max has other functions that will make other aspects of Medical Justice's work more efficient and effective. Max has been developed and tested. We are loading Max with data over the next 3 months on all the cases we have handled in the past (approx 2,000+ cases).
Max will help us challenge medical abuse in detention centres
"We handle 1,000 referrals a year. It will probably be more next year. To do justice to these cases, we need a proper case-management system."
Theresa Schleicher, Casework Manager, Medical Justice
"Max enables us to better track outcomes for detainees - this will help encourage more doctors to volunteer and visit detainees"
Dr. Jonathan Fluxman, GP, volunteer doctor working with Medical Justice
"To demonstrate to the courts that a particular denial of rights is widespread and not limited to a specific detainee or a specific detention centre, we need to prove it. Audit data generated from Max, coupled with in-depth analysis developed into dossiers and research reports can help win legal cases. Our research was vital to our successful challenge of UKBA's zero-notice removals policy which the High Court ruled unlawful last year. Medical Justice is making an intervention next month by submitting a dossier of the medical abuse of 35 HIV+ detainees in a case in the Court of Appeal. Without Max, production of our dossiers has been painfully slow. Max means we can speed up. Max will generate the accurate data needed about medical abuse and it's toxic effects on detainees' health that stands up to scrutiny."
Alexander Goodman, barrister, Medical Justice trustee
"Medical Justice sent a doctor to visit me. I was released after the doctor wrote a medico legal report for me. I am still traumatised by detention in the UK, but comforted to know that the abuse I suffered was documented and will be used in a dossier, raising awareness and bringing lasting change."
If you can cover the cost of a Max module ;
Two key Max modules, the Patient/Case Management module (integrates info on patients with management of cases) and the Doctors Info Pack (instantly creates an up to date summary of necessary info about the detainee that the doctor is visiting) have been kindly funded by the Network for Social Change. Modules that still need to be funded ;
£3,600 - Reports : ability for staff to run reports with some user-defined criteria
£780 - Application and database hosting
£1,500 - Library module : sharing between users of non-patent documents, reference tools, etc.
£1,860 - Simultaneous publishing of Library documents : selected items can be published direct from the datasystem to our website
£2,100 - Doctors module : links a database of volunteer doctors with outcomes of patients cases, medical reports written, training activity, etc.
£1,080 - Doctors sign on : provides tailored doctor's view
£1,440 - Professional Contacts : links a database of contacts (e.g. lawyers, other doctors) to Medical Justice cases
£1,860 - SMS module : automated system to text detainees and doctors with key info about a medical visit or other event
£2,160 - Membership module : tracks supporters, donations and enables managing the mailing list by special interest groupings
£2,700 - Web referrals module : enables referrals to us via our website and the data is processed direct into the dataystem
£2,160 - Automatic reminders : time-management of tasks linked to cases
£1,500 - Calendar : medical visits to detention centres, meetings, training and events.
£600 - Training : training from the soft-ware provider for users
Note : The above does not include computers and travel expenses needed over at least three months for the data-entry volunteers. If this appeal raises more than the £23,057 needed for Max, the rest will go towards volunteers' expenses and general running costs, for which there is a short-fall this year.