Health Reform and Criminal Justice:
Integrating Jails into Health Information Exchanges

On April 3, 2012, COCHS with support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and Public Welfare Foundation held Health Reform and Criminal Justice: Integrating Jails into Health Information Exchanges. The conference focused attention on the potential of health information exchange in conjunction with that Afordable Care Act to facilitate electronic continuity of care between jails and the communities in which they reside.
Despite the critical role that local and county jails play as health care providers for some of society’s most vulnerable populations, they generally are left out of broader discussions concerning the national movement to expand health information technology, including through the development of HIEs and electronic health record (EHRs) systems. But in order for health information technology to achieve its full potential to improve population health and bend the health care cost curve, jails need to be part of this technology.
The keynote speaker for this convening was Judy Murphy Deputy National Coordinator for Programs and Policy at the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology.
In addition, specifically produced for this conference was The Unseen Provider, a short documentary that illustrated the need and benefit of creating connectivity between community and correctional providers through health information exchanges.


Julia Lear, Chairperson, Community Oriented Correctional Health Services



Seema Gajwani, JD, Program Officer for Criminal Justice, Public Welfare Foundation

Nancy Barrand, Special Adviser for Program Development, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

HIE Documentary: The Unseen Provider

Panel 01: Using HIT to Bring Jails into the Safety Net


Panel 02: Health Information Technology in Jails

Panel 03: HIPAA and 42 CFR Part 2

Panel 04: Envisioning the Future

Closing Remarks

Conference Issue Papers
Speaking The Same Language: Criminal Justice, Health Care, and Information Technology
This glossary contains definitions of terms that cross the domains of criminal justice, health care, and information technology. Often stakeholders in these different domains are confused by the terminology that partner stakeholders use. The COCHS' glossary was compiled to assist these diverse stakeholders in their endeavor to establish continuity of care between communities and criminal justice.
Health Information Privacy in the Correctional Environment
Melissa Goldstein, JD, of George Washingto University explores the complexity of applying HIPAA and 42 CFR Part 2 regulations within a criminal justice setting. Both of these regulations are complicated outside of corrections but the complications increase dramatically within the walls of jails and prisons, especially since health information technology has become much more prevalent within these settings.
Opportunities for Information-Sharing Between Criminal Justice And Community Substance Abuse Treatment System
This issue brief illustrates the many opportunities for criminal justice and community substance abuse treatment systems to share information. It shows how data collected at various points along the criminal justice continuum could be shared to benefit different agencies within the criminal justice system, as well as substance abuse treatment programs.
The Challenges of Bringing Connectivity to Jails via Health Information Technology: Three Case Studies
Three case studies of efforts to bring health information technology into jails, shedding light on the challenges to creating connectivity via health information technology.
Getting Criminal Justice and Health Information Exchange Off the Ground: The Role of Counties
This paper illuminates the role of counties in getting justice-involved health information exchanges off the ground, with a case study of the Salt Lake County, Utah, experience.
Health Outcomes in Corrections: Health Information Technology and the Correctional Health Outcome and Resource Data Set (CHORDS)
A proposal for assessing health care provided in correctional settings to assist these facilities transition to health information technology adoption and implementation.