Financial implications of the Bill
30. The Bill would provide powers to test for a wider range of substances than are currently covered in the prison drugs testing framework. Depending on how HMPPS uses these powers, they could give rise to some additional laboratory costs because the laboratory would be testing for a wider range of substances. This might also give rise to a larger number of positive results, which could involve increased costs for providing therapeutic support such as substance misuse courses or increased adjudication costs.
31. To illustrate the nature of the costs involved, during the financial year 2017/18, spend on drug testing kits and analytical services in prisons was £4.04m. To understand the capabilities of the various testing providers, HMPPS is going out to the market via a procurement exercise. The aim is to procure a drugs testing service that will support HMPPS to identify and respond to changes in patterns of drug misuse by offenders both in custody and in the community, using current and future innovative solutions.