Online Program

Developing an inter-professional university-community partnership to promote health at a county jail

Wednesday, November 6, 2013 : 8:30 a.m. - 8:45 a.m.

Kerry Dunn, JD, PhD, School of Social Work, University of New England, Portland, ME
This paper describes lessons learned from efforts to build a mutually-beneficial partnership between a private, health-focused university and a county jail. The project developed out of a course in which social work students studied the criminal justice system together with a group of incarcerated men. At the end of the course, the participants created a planning group for the purpose of finding additional ways to bring university resources into the jail. The planning group currently includes inmates, jail educators, students, and faculty who work together to identify and address health needs at the jail.

In Spring 2013, the collaboration focused on three projects: health education, exercise training, and support groups. These projects involved students and faculty from four professions: social work, nursing, occupational therapy, and physician assistant. This paper will discuss health needs at the jail, project design and implementation, the benefits to students of hands-on inter-professional collaboration, and the special opportunities and challenges jail-university partnership.

Learning Areas:

Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Other professions or practice related to public health
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs

Learning Objectives:
Identify challenges to building university partnerships with correctional facilities. List common health needs in jails and prisons that can be addressed through university partnership. Describe educational benefits for students working in interprofessional teams to do address health needs in jails and prisons.

Keyword(s): Jails and Prisons, Community-Based Partnership

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am a social work educator who studied university-prison partnership for her dissertation research. I work in a college of health professions and have incorporated students and faculty from multiple programs into a new partnership at our local county jail. I have 20 years experience doing legal and educational work in jails and prisons.
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.