Department of Correctional Services

Regional Medical Units

Inmates in State prisons may receive medical care in outside hospitals, in prison infirmaries, or in regional medical units located on the premises of selected prisons. The regional medical units provide specialist services to outpatients and skilled nursing services to inpatients who do not require hospitalization. Our audit addressed the inpatient services provided by the units. At the time of our audit, a total of three units were in operation, two of which were operated by State employees and one of which was operated by a private contractor. The Department of Correctional Services was expected to compare the operating costs of the State-run inpatient units to the operating costs of the contractor-run inpatient unit. According to the comparisons performed by the Department, costs were lower at the contractor-run unit. However, when we reviewed the comparisons, we found that they were flawed and inaccurate. Moreover, we found indications that costs may be higher at the contractor-run unit. We recommend that the Department improve the accuracy of its cost comparisons. We also found that the Department needs to establish a formal quality assurance program to ensure that inmates receive appropriate care at all regional medical units.

For a complete copy of Report 97-S-40 click here.
For a copy of the 90-day response click here.
For a copy of the associated follow-up report click here.