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State prison gets high marks for medical care

State prison gets high marks for medical care



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Press releaseDRAPER, Utah -- A national organization that oversees the delivery of medical care in correctional settings has awarded the Utah State Prison a perfect score in its latest review of the facility.

The Draper prison achieved 100 percent compliance on each of the National Commission on Correctional Health Care's 68 standards for health services. The standards, which have been widely accepted by the health, legal and corrections professions, cover all areas of inmate medical care, including:

  • Inmate care and treatment
  • Special inmate needs and services
  • Facility governance and administration
  • Personnel and training
  • Health promotion and disease prevention
  • Managing a safe and healthy environment

"Providing quality health care in a prison setting can be a difficult endeavor, but we have a dedicated staff that cares for Utah's incarcerated every single day," said Dr. Richard Garden, director of the Department's Clinical Services Bureau.

The Clinical Services Bureau mission is to provide constitutionally mandated health care to the more than 6,000 inmates under the Department of Corrections' jurisdiction in a competent, caring and cost effective manner. The bureau has been accredited by the commission since 1996. This is the first time, however, that the bureau has achieved the perfect scores in each category.

The accreditation process includes an on-site survey every three years. Central Utah Correctional Facility in Gunnison also received accreditation through the latest survey, achieving 97 percent compliance.

"The high marks from the commission reflect the quality medical care our clinical staff provides on a daily basis," said Tom Patterson, executive director of the Utah Department of Corrections. "These scores are indicative of the conscientious care and proficiency of our staff at both facilities."

The National Commission on Correctional Health Care is a private, nongovernmental association that works to improve the quality of health care in jails, prisons and juvenile confinement facilities.

(Courtesy of the Department of Corrections)

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