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Reentry Experiences of Men with Health Problems

  • Christy A. Visher
  • Kamala Mallik-Kane

One of the most profound challenges facing American society is the reintegration of more than 650,000 individuals who leave state and federal prisons and return home each year. The fourfold increase in incarceration rates over the past 25 years has had far-reaching consequences. Four million citizens have lost their right to vote. One and a half million children have a parent in prison. Men and women leave correctional facilities with little preparation for life on the outside, insufficient assistance with reintegration, and a high likelihood of return to prison for new crimes or parole violations. Nationwide, over half of released prisoners are expected to return to prison within 3 years (Langan & Levin, 2002), and some states experience even higher rates of recidivism. This cycle of incarceration and return of large numbers of adults, mostly men between the ages of 18 and 35, creates specific health needs and risks for returning prisoners, their families, and the community at large.The challenges to improve the health profile of the prison population and protect the health of their families and communities to which they return are numerous. Persons released from prison are disproportionately afflicted with illness and tend to be sicker, on average, than the U.S. general population (Davis & Pacchiana, 2003). The prevalence of chronic, communicable, and mental illnesses is often higher among prisoners than in the general population due, in part, to higher levels of socioeconomic disadvantage and substance use compared to the average American (National Commission on Correctional Health Care [NCCHC], 2002). It is also common for many in the prisoner population to have multiple, co-occurring health conditions (Davis & Pacchiana, 2003).

Keywords

Mental Health Condition Substance Abuse Treatment Physical Health Problem Physical Health Condition Substance Abuse Problem 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Christy A. Visher
    • 1
  • Kamala Mallik-Kane
    • 1
  1. 1.The Urban InstituteWashingtonUSA

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