skip navigation


Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.


NCJ Number: 98103 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: Correctional Health Care - The Perspective of a Special Master
Journal: Prison Journal  Volume:65  Issue:1  Dated:(Spring-Summer 1985)  Pages:73-82
Author(s): V M Nathan
Date Published: 1985
Page Count: 10
Sponsoring Agency: National Institute of Justice/
Rockville, MD 20849
NCJRS Photocopy Services
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
Sale Source: National Institute of Justice/
NCJRS paper reproduction
Box 6000, Dept F
Rockville, MD 20849
United States of America

NCJRS Photocopy Services
Box 6000
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
United States of America
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This examination of inmate health care points out numerous deficiencies in current care and argues that attorneys and medical professionals should work jointly to improve health care in prisons and jails in the United States.
Abstract: Litigation has provided the impetus for reforming medical practice in correctional facilities, but human and scientific resources are essential for meaningful reform. Although the ideal prison provides basic human services in a decent and healthful physical environment, prisons generally do not meet this ideal. The more poorly a prison is managed, the greater the demand will be for medical services and facilities. Poor regular diets will lead to prisoners' seeking therapeutic diets. Idleness, boredom, and depression in prisons lacking adequate programming will cause prisoners to pay more attention to insignificant illnesses. Prisons that fail to provide secure environments will have higher rates of assault and serious injury. Prisoners may also seek respite from tedious routines by going to the sick call waiting room. Typical reactions of medical professionals to the increased level of demands for services are overwhelming stress and burnout and characterization of prisoners as malingerers. This characterization can lead to neglect of serious medical problems and to transformation of professional medical personnel into an auxiliary security force. Medical personnel cannot by themselves correct policy causes of excessive sick calls. Physicians must resist efforts to limit the quality and quantity of medical treatment to the needs of institutional security, productivity, discipline, and administrative convenience. Three references are listed.
Index Term(s): Correctional reform; Inmate health care; Prisoner's rights; Services effectiveness
Note: *This document is currently unavailable from NCJRS.
To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.