Appeals Court Dismisses California’s Receivership Challenge

A federal appellate court dismissed the state of California’s challenge to the continued oversight of prison healthcare by a court-appointed receiver.

The U.S. Appeals Court in Phoenix rejected the state’s assertion that the appointment of a federal receiver to remedy unconstitutional conditions of healthcare in the California state prison system overstepped the bounds of federal authority.

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Reformation Realities

As serious as the healthcare reform debate is, information dissemination has a saturation point. In the history of the republic, I don’t believe we have ever blogged something to death, but, alas, we did seek new frontiers. Our elected representatives seem to be much better at dealing with the acute problems produced by the recent Haitian and Chilean disasters than sustaining the journey toward systemic cures for chronic ills.

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Southern Health Announces Promotions

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. — Southern Health Partners Inc., a correctional healthcare provider based in Chattanooga, promoted several members of its management team to senior company officer positions.
SHP, which provides medical, mental health and dental care to county jail inmates in 12 states, named Jennifer Hairsine president and CEO. Hairsine, who previously served as executive vice president, has been with the company since it was created in 1994.

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More Than 8,000 Texas Inmates Diagnosed With Major Psychiatric Disorder

GALVESTON, Texas — Authorities should expand specialized interventions and programming to reduce the higher recidivism rates that exist among inmates with major mental illness, according to a University of Texas Medical Branch study.

Inmates with major psychiatric disorders — an estimated 10 percent of the Texas state prison population — are more likely to be incarcerated repeatedly than offenders without mental health issues, according to the study published in the American Psychiatric Association’s Journal of Psychiatry.

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GEO Consolidates Healthcare Operations, Opens New Facility

ARCADIA, Fla. — The GEO Group opened a new $62 million secure treatment facility as the private prison operator announced the consolidation of correctional healthcare functions under the company’s GEO Care division.

The new 720-bed Florida Civil Commitment Center replaces the existing 660-bed facility in Arcadia, and is designed to provide comprehensive treatment programming for offenders detained or committed under Florida’s Sexually Violent Predator Act.

FCCC is Florida’s only civil commitment program for sexual offenders in the state.

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Mental Illness Abounds Among N.Y., Md. Females

WASHINGTON — The prevalence of serious mental illness among female jail inmates is twice the rate of that among male inmates, according to a two-phase study that screened more than 21,000 adult offenders entering five local jails in New York and Maryland.

More than 30 percent of female inmates suffer from at least one serious mental health disorder, such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder or major depression, compared to 15 percent of male inmates, according to researchers at the Council of State Governments Justice Center.

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