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Trauma Care for Justice-Involved Persons

  • Mary K. Bryant
  • Sara Scarlet
  • Elizabeth B. DreesenEmail author
Chapter
  • 39 Downloads

Abstract

The USA has a larger incarcerated population than any other country in the world. In recent years, investigators have explored the health needs of the incarcerated population, which exceed those of the non-incarcerated population. This needs assessment has focused on primary medical and psychiatric care. As appreciation of the unique health needs of the incarcerated has grown, so too has the field of corrections medicine, which is primarily focused on meeting the primary medical and mental healthcare needs of the incarcerated population. In contrast, there is a paucity of data regarding surgical and trauma needs among the incarcerated. Data that do exist suggest that the prevalence of traumatic injury among incarcerated persons is high. Moreover, experiences of trauma may confer an increased lifetime risk of incarceration.

Unlike other conditions for which the majority of care can be delivered within correctional facilities, much of the trauma care for justice-involved individuals will be delivered by clinicians outside of correctional contexts. Even in these settings, however, correctional control influences the delivery of healthcare. While the trauma community has emphasized the need for understanding the epidemiology and outcomes of traumatic injury within certain communities, they have yet to recognize justice-involved individuals as a unique community. There are no guidelines for clinicians caring for justice-involved individuals in trauma contexts. In this chapter, we will use the available data to describe the impact of trauma and violence on the health and healthcare of justice-involved individuals. We will then advocate for more robust data collection to facilitate the delivery of patient-centered, trauma-informed care, tailored to the unique needs of the justice-involved population.

Keywords

Justice involvement Incarceration Correctional control Trauma Injury 

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Suggested Reading

  1. Binswanger, I. A., Blatchford, P. J., Mueller, S. R., & Stern, M. F. (2013). Mortality after prison release: Opioid overdose and other causes of death, risk factors, and time trends from 1999 to 2009. Ann Intern Med, 159, 592–600.  https://doi.org/10.7326/0003-4819-159-9-201311050-00005CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  2. Jaggi, L. J., Mezuk, B., Watkins, D. C., & Jackson, J. S. (2016). The relationship between trauma, arrest, and incarceration history among Black Americans: Findings from the National Survey of American Life. Soc Ment Health., 6, 187–206.  https://doi.org/10.1177/2156869316641730CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  3. Scarlet, S., & Dreesen, E. (2017). Surgery in shackles: What are surgeons’ obligations to incarcerated patients in the operating rom? AMA J Ethics., 19, 939–946.  https://doi.org/10.1001/journalofethics.2017.19.9.pfor1-1709CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  4. Wagner, P., & Sawyer, W. (2018). Mass incarceration: The whole pie. Available via https://www.prisonpolicy.org/reports/pie2018.html
  5. Wildeman, C., & Wang, E. A. (2017). Mass incarceration, public health, and widening inequality in the USA. Lancet., 389, 1464–1474.  https://doi.org/10.1016/s0140-6736(17)30259-3CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mary K. Bryant
    • 1
  • Sara Scarlet
    • 1
  • Elizabeth B. Dreesen
    • 2
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of SurgeryUniversity of North Carolina at Chapel HillChapel HillUSA
  2. 2.Department of Surgery, Division of General and Acute Care Surgery, University of North Carolina at Chapel HillChapel HillUSA

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