Report Finds Inadequate Health Care at Calif.’s Largest Medical Prison
A court-appointed overseer has halted admissions to California's largest medical prison facility after an inspection found unsanitary conditions and inadequate medical care for inmates, the Stockton Record reports (Rodriguez-Moore, Stockton Record, 2/6).
Details of Findings
Specifically, the report noted that patients were found to have:
- Catheter leaks;
- Diaper leaks;
- Lack of state-issued clothing;
- Skin tears; and
- Swollen or cracked feet.
In addition, the report noted that one patient had died from excessive bleeding after his calls to nurses were unanswered for more than 30 minutes.
The report also found that the facility was not properly managing its supply chain or keeping up with necessary medical supplies. For instance, Kelso said there was a lack of soap and towels at the facility, which likely contributed to the scabies outbreak.
The facility also was understaffed in key administrative and clinical positions, including psychiatrists, according to the report.
The report stated that the Stockton facility "was being run as just another prison -- where custody issues are typically the highest priority and health care and other programs are secondary -- instead of being run as a health care facility for patient-inmates."
Rebekah Evenson, an attorney with the prison law office, said, "The prison is experiencing serious system problems that are putting hundreds, if not thousands, of prisoners at serious risk of harm," adding, "We are glad to see that they have stopped admitting patients" (Stockton Record, 2/5).
Deborah Hoffman, a spokesperson for the state Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, said, "It's not uncommon for new facilities to have stops and starts during the activation process," but she added that the agency is working to correct the problems (AP/U-T San Diego, 2/5).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.