Larry Lawton, nationally recognized prison expert addresses private prison healthcare.
A Leon County judge ruled the Legislative Budget Commission improperly approved the privatization of most state prison health care. The decision voids the $229 million contract with Corizon Correctional Healthcare, based in Nashville, according to published reports. The contract funding was not approved in this year’s budget and thus could not be approved by the Legislative Budget Commission because it violates the Florida Constitution, the judge ruled. The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees challenged the privatization, which puts about 2,000 state employees’ jobs on the line. “Keeping prison health care in-house will preserve quality care and save Florida taxpayers money,” said Jeanette Wynn, AFSCME Council 79 president, in a statement about the ruling.
Larry Lawton the Casey Anthony expert for FOX News Orlando addresses private prison healthcare, Corizon and can it work?
You have to look at prison healthcare from four different points of view.
- The prison facility or state – They are looking to save money.
- The prison healthcare company (Corizon Prison Healthcare is the largest private company contracting prison healthcare) – They are looking to make money.
- The inmate – How the inmate is affected.
- The pubic – How the public is affected.
Let’s address each individually.
The prison facility or state – The state wants to save money and outsourcing is part of what companies or states do to save money. Finding the right company with the right oversight is the most important part for the state.
There are philosophical reasons the state has to debate. Do you incarcerate your citizens and then pay a private company to do that? Is prison about rehabilitation? Saving money is important, but at what cost?
The issues I mentioned above are only touching the surface of what our politicians need to debate. A politicians should be held accountable for his or hers decisions with regards to prison issues. Lives are at stake and prisons are one of the costliest entities our tax dollars fund.
The prison healthcare company – Their #1 concern is profits. Otherwise they wouldn’t be in business. They have to answer to shareholders. The real question is, what can they provide that is worth the contact? Do they have INDEPENDENT oversight? That is the most important question that can be asked. When I say independent, I mean from someone like me.
Understanding the ins and outs of a prison can only be done by someone like me. Not an ex-bureau of prisons official, guard, etc. You have to understand what is going on inside the prison from not only the administration’s view, but from an inmate’s view as well.
The inmate – What a position to be in. I want to emphasize the fact they are convicted of something. This is also not the forum to discuss what charges they might have been convicted of. That is a whole different topic.
As an inmate in prison you have absolutely no control, say or way of expressing your concerns. Prison officials will say they do, but in actuality, they don’t. There are ways of fixing that, but admitting you have a problem is the first step to fixing the problem. There are good and bad nurses, doctors, and medical personal as well as prison officials.
If an inmate complains, he might be thrown in the “hole” and tortured, I was. Edgefield prison killed three people in a year due to poor medical care. One Lieutenant told me, “so what, his family will get paid” words a man can never forget. Very sad and it showed me people lose compassion when they work in prisons. It is a very sad environment for not only the inmates, but the guards as well.
The public – The public should be very concerned. If a prison healthcare company or prison healthcare in general doesn’t do the right thing, it affects YOU, the average citizen. People’s lives are at stake. The cost of after prison medical care is a serious topic. People call me who work at private prisons and private prison healthcare companies complaining how they aren’t allowed to dispense medications because it costs too much money. They are torn between keeping a job and upholding the Hippocratic Oath. It is a very sad position to be in. What happened to compassion?
As a person who spent 11 years incarcerated, the stories I know about prison healthcare would make you sick. Once we lose our compassion and heart we lose our humanity. Sadly, it happens every day.
Read about prisons and what happens if you complain – Gangster Redemption
Read the book Gangster Redemption. It will open your eyes. The book is about organized crime, prison torture and developing the #1 program to prevent young people from going to prison in the first place.
Information is so important and should be everyone’s goal. It took me many years to obtain the experience, education and knowledge to be a sort after adviser on prison issues. I am available to speak with both sides on the topic of prison healthcare. There are pros and cons on both sides.
Click here Larry Lawton’s BIO
Click here Larry Lawton Prison Consulting