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Community Oriented Correctional Health Services

Community Oriented Correctional Health Services (COCHS) is the national leader in promoting health care connectivity between jails and the communities in which they reside. COCHS reserves its home page to highlight developments impacting public health and public safety. For those seeking more information about COCHS, please visit our About Us page.

  • Achieving Racial Equity in Health Care & Criminal Justice Reform
    The Legal Action Center’s No Health = No Justice Campaign is a Multistate Plan envisioning a system of mass decarceration where health care is provided to all and people are no longer criminalized for conditions related to their health.
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  • Prescribing and Dispensing Medications within Corrections:
    The Role of Health Information Technology

    COCHS' Chief Information Officer Ben Butler’s latest issue paper describes how medications are prescribed and dispensed in a criminal justice system setting. While many community providers can assume that their community has an existing infrastructure for the prescribing and dispensing of medications, correctional facilities often have to implement their own systems for this purpose. Ben’s paper is the first of its type describing these vital components of correctional health care. This paper outlines the ways in which multiple technologies and multiple stakeholders must cooperate to build out systems unique to their environment.
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  • Ocala Community Care marks 10 years of helping jail inmates
    Ocala Community Care covers the “sub-acute” needs of the inmate population, which is currently about 1,300. The organization provides medical, dental and mental health care. It deals with a full range of needs, including pregnancy. Ocala Community Care is modeled after Community Oriented Correctional Health Services (COCHS), used by the Hampden County Sheriff’s Department at the Hampden County Jail and House of Corrections in Ludlow, Massachusetts.
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  • Jails: Inadvertent Health Care Providers
    Based on research contributed by COCHS' staff, the PEW Charitable Trust explores how jails obtain health care services for detainees. The findings show that county jails vary in many ways—from how they pay for their health care to the specific services they offer. Examining these different approaches can help county leaders make more informed choices about how to fulfill jails’ role in the health care safety net, achieve their county public safety missions, and spend taxpayer dollars more wisely.
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  • The National Association of Counties(NACo):
    Medicaid Coverage and County Jails

    In order to educate federal policymakers on issues around Medicaid and justice-involved individuals, NACo recently released a new report titled, Medicaid Coverage and County Jails: Understanding Challenges and Opportunities for Improving Health Outcomes for Justice-Involved Individuals. In this document, NACo’s Associate Legislative Director for Health, Brian Bowden, explains why Congress should pass legislation to ease and/ or undo the federal Medicaid inmate exclusion and require states to suspend, instead of terminate, Medicaid coverage for justice involved individuals. Further, The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) should exercise their existing authority to provide additional state flexibility in the Medicaid program to cover justice-involved individuals. Read more...
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  • Signed Out Of Prison But Not Signed Up For Health Insurance
    Although Medicaid expansion has offered help to many of those who have never had access to lifesaving medications, wending one’s way through the bureaucratic thicket remains a challenge that all too often requires luck to be successful. This is particularly true for individuals leaving correctional care without health insurance. Dan Mistak, COCHS' general counsel is interviewed for this story and highlights COCHS work in this area. Read more...

  • The Surgeon General's Report on Alcohol, Drugs, and Health
    The first-ever Surgeon General’s Report on Alcohol, Drugs, and Health reviews what we know about substance misuse and how you can use that knowledge to address substance misuse and related consequences. Read more...