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NCJ Number: 219844 Find in a Library
Title: Identifying and Treating Mental Illness: One Jail System's Story
Journal: Corrections Today Magazine  Volume:69  Issue:4  Dated:August 2007  Pages:30-32
Author(s): Jeff Blum
Date Published: August 2007
Page Count: 3
Type: Program/Project Description
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This article discusses recent changes in female inmate treatment and medication policies in the Davidson County (Tennessee) Sheriff’s Office.
Abstract: The main point of the article is to describe how a change in sheriff office policies and the establishment of a collaborative relationship with community providers resulted in a major drop in the percentage of female inmates on psychotropic medications from 48 percent to 30 percent during a 6 month period. During 2004, the sheriff’s office constructed its own stand-alone female correctional facility and began the process of transferring the growing number of female inmates from a privately contracted facility into its new facility. During the transition process, a decision was made to keep all female inmates on their current medications for a period of 6 months following the transition. During that time, the sheriff’s office contracted with the Mental Health Cooperative (MHC) to provide mental health services to its female inmates. Using a grant from the Tennessee Bar Association, the mental health community and the criminal justice community collaborated regarding the female population that seemed to circle through the mental health services and the jail system. A protocol was quickly established that tracked the female inmates through the community by using a daily e-mail system whereby newly admitted female inmates were cross-checked with all community providers so that information regarding diagnosis and medication could be established. This collaboration resulted in the discovery that many inmates were being over-medicated. Proper diagnosis and a closely monitored 30-day detoxification program helped many inmates overcome drug addictions and leave prison substance-free.
Main Term(s): Female inmates; Inmate drug treatment
Index Term(s): Correctional reform; Procedures; Tennessee
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