Tennessee Sheriff’s Office Obtains Health Care Accreditation

By CN Staff

HAMILTON COUNTY, Tenn.—The Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office has been awarded the National Commission on Correctional Health Care for its compliance with the NCCHC’s Standards for Health Services in Jails.

The NCCHC helps correctional facilities improve the health of their inmates and their communities which, in turn, increases the efficiency of their health services delivery, strengthens their organizational effectiveness, and reduces their risk of adverse patient outcomes and legal judgments.

“Receiving this certification is a testament to the level of professionalism and expertise of our medical and correctional staff,” said Deputy Chief of Corrections Joe Fowler, in a statement.

“We have always felt we have good protocols, policies, and procedures. This is validation from an outside set of eyes, a national organization with this specialization, that we are doing the right things regarding the health and welfare of those in our custody.”

Added Sheriff Jim Hammond, “When inmates leave our correctional facility, I want them to return to their community safe and healthy so they may continue to be productive citizens of Hamilton County. The Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office Medical and Corrections Division staff has worked diligently to achieve the NCCHC accreditation. I am proud of their accomplishments and proud to announce this accreditation, which shows we are a top tier agency.”

The Standards for Health Services in Jails set by the NCCHC are recommended requirements for the proper management of a correctional health services delivery system and cover the general areas—governance and administration, safety, personnel training, health care services and support, inmate care and treatment, health promotion, special needs and services, health records, and medical-legal issues.

The Hamilton County Jail contracts with Erlanger Health Systems to provide comprehensive health services to inmates in the Hamilton County Corrections Jail. Services provided include professional medical and nursing health care, with 24-hour nursing coverage; a preliminary screening of inmates upon arrival at the jail; comprehensive health evaluations and preventive care; emergency medical care; medication administration; ancillary services; special medical programs and diets; quality assurance program; and medical administrative support. Dental care is provided by a dentist who is onsite eight hours weekly.