Prison Terminal

Prison Terminal is a documentary about the hospice program at the Iowa State Penitentiary. Like all hospice programs, they provide interdisciplinary care to persons who are dying (life expectancy of 6 months or less), and rely on the work of volunteers to provide key services and spend time with patients.  The twist is that this program uses other inmates to help provide this care. While prison often invokes images of young men, this documentary points out that 3,000 inmates died in prisons last year, and that by 2025 one in four inmates in the U.S. is expected to be elderly as the cohort of persons incarcerated during the spike in drug related sentences in the 1980s-90s grows older and has increasing health care needs.

(h/t to Pallimed Blog one of the best hospice and palliative medicine blogs around)

About Don Taylor
Professor of Public Policy at Duke University (with appointments in Business, Nursing, Community and Family Medicine, and the Duke Clinical Research Institute). I am one of the founding faculty of the Margolis Center for Health Policy, and currently serve as Chair of Duke's University Priorities Committee (UPC). My research focuses on improving care for persons who are dying, and I am co-PI of a CMMI award in Community Based Palliative Care. I teach both undergrads and grad students at Duke. On twitter @donaldhtaylorjr

One Response to Prison Terminal

  1. Floccina says:

    This reminds me of the idea of self care. We all give ourselves and family and friends some low level of care. We put on band aids we give over the counter medicines we may lance blisters. We could over time do more as technology improves so it is good to think about it when proposing policy. I think that because of health insurance and licensing people than less than what would be optimal.

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