By SDCN Staff
San Diego, CA–The San Diego County Sheriff’s Department and the County Health and Human Services Agency have collaborated to improve the local jail system and provide a safe environment for individuals who are in custody and their staff.
An action was presented to the San Diego County Board of Supervisors that introduced the creation of the San Diego Sheriff’s Department Correctional Healthcare Assessment and Recommendation Workgroup.
The workgroup was formed in September with the intent of studying best practices in Correctional Healthcare. This effort includes Sheriff’s and Health and Human Services Agency personnel and potential consultants to determine recommendations for implementation by the Sheriff that will deliver focused healthcare not only while someone is incarcerated, but also pre and post-incarceration, officials said.
San Diego County Sheriff’s Department Undersheriff Kelly Martinez and Health and Human Services Agency Director Nick Macchione will lead this effort to develop best practice recommendations for final approval and implementation by the Sheriff.
The study and implementation of recommendations will improve the quality of medical and behavioral health care in San Diego County jails by examining operational and clinical best practices across the United States.
“We’re proud to partner with HHSA as we continue to invest in our jails to improve safety and transparency,” said Undersheriff Martinez. “The workgroup is part of our comprehensive plan to provide continuity of care to people in our custody.”
“We look forward to this collaborative effort with our Sheriff’s Department,” said Health and Human Services Agency Director Nick Macchione. “Best practices from this workgroup will help improve the lives and livelihood of justice-involved individuals, their families, and our communities.”
County jails have the potential to significantly influence the health trajectory of their populations. Individuals often enter the jail system experiencing significant medical issues. Once released, they often lack the ability to continue the care they received while in custody, San Diego County Sheriff’s Department said in a news release.
Recommended changes may encompass clinical and non-clinical policies and procedures, workforce, and leadership development, as well as other metrics to meet the jail population’s diverse needs.
“We value the individual contributions of our deputies, medical and professional staff in our jails, as well as their continued commitment to the collective goal of putting patient care first. By providing data that supports the work we are doing, we are giving our staff the tools they need to deliver high-quality care,” Sheriff’s Department officials said.