253572 Post-prison Reentry and Health: Addressing the Health Impacts of Incarceration on Returning Prisoners and Their Communities - The Transitional Health Clinic Model

Monday, October 31, 2011: 12:45 PM

Sarah Wakeman, MD , Massachusetts General Hospital; Harvard Medical School; The Center for Prisoner Health and Human Rights at Brown University, Charlestown, MA
I will discuss the importance of post-release care for the millions of Americans that are incarcerated each year, the vast majority of whom will return to their communities, often without insurance or linkages to medical care despite the disproportionately high rates of infectious diseases, addiction, mental illness, and chronic illness amongst this marginalized population. Incarceration provides an opportunity to diagnose, treat and provide linkages to care for these men and women. With a 13 times increased risk in all cause mortality in the two weeks following release, transitional care during this vulnerable time is crucial. I will discuss the structure of our post-release clinic at one of Massachusetts General Hospital's community health centers and the challenges and successes of implementing a post-release clinic within a large academic institution. In addition, I will address the importance of incorporating prisoner health and post-release care into residency curriculum to train the next generation of physicians in the health needs of this vulnerable population.

Learning Areas:
Provision of health care to the public

Learning Objectives:
Discuss the importance of post-release care. Describe the needs of post-release populations. Identify the challenges of creating a post-release clinic within a busy community health center. Present a model curriculum for internal medicine residencies in prisoner and transitional health care.

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have designed and implemented a post-release clinic in Charlestown, MA.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.