Technical Assistance

COCHS provides a wide range of services at the interface of correctional health and community services. Multiple jurisdictions have requested our assistance in improving the healthcare delivery within in their correctional facilities.
San Diego County, California: 2020
COCHS has been selected by San Diego County to conduct a best practices assessment for the County Jail. This project will be led by Dr. Homer Venters, Presiden of COCHS with Michael Dubose, CEO of COCHS, and will focus on practices by security and health staff that reduce mortality and morbidity in the jail setting. Dr. Venters and Mr. Dubose will review relevant data from San Diego, meet with stakeholders, compare local practices to national best practices, and produce a report that provides recommendations for improving facility systems that are critical to morbidity and mortality.
Former Rikers Island medical chief to lead study of San Diego County jails

San Diego Union-Tribune

San Diego County has selected COCHS to perform a “best practices” review of the local jail system, a study the Board of Supervisors commissioned in response to a six-month investigation by The San Diego Union-Tribune into the high death rate among inmates. The San Diego study will be supervised by Dr. Homer Venters, the former chief medical officer at New York City Correctional Health Services who took over as the nonprofit’s president in January.
Sheriff, supervisors should better define jail healthcare goals, study says
San Diego Union Tribune
Elected leaders in San Diego County should consider taking a more comprehensive approach to the health care provided to thousands of inmates housed in local jails, a new study commissioned by the county says. Dr. Homer Venters, the report’s co-author said the Board of Supervisors and Sheriff Bill Gore should redefine the level of care inmates receive in custody.
Chatham County, Georgia (Savannah): 2015 - 2019

Chatham County, Georgia (Savannah) contracted with COCHS to develop a request for proposal (RFP) in order to select a new healthcare vendor at the Chatham County Detention Center (CCDC). Included in the RFP was a requirement to obtain a new electronic health record that would interface with the local health information exchange (HIE), Georgia Regional Academic Community Health Information Exchange (GRAChIE) --now ChathamHealthLink. After selection of the new healthcare vendor, CorrectHealth, Chatham County requested that COCHS monitor the new healthcare vendor's delivery of contracted services and assess penalties for non-compliance. COCHS conducted monthly on-site visits at CCDC to determine the overall status of the new vendor’s processes, implementation of policies and procedures, maintenance of appropriate levels of staffing, and timely dispensing of medications. In addition, COCHS provided assistance in the county obtaining electronic Medication Administration Record (eMAR) for CCDC.

Health IT Protecting Our Most Vulnerable at the County Jail
For local Chatham County officials, it became imperative that meaningful health information be accessed at the time of processing or “booking” for detainees at the jail in order to effectively support their continuity of care, reduce duplication of services and protect the safety and welfare of everyone in the CCDC system.
For sheriffs, healthcare for inmates can be a burden. For one doctor, it has been the opportunity of a lifetime
The contract [with Correct Health], worth $7 million annually, required the company to be overseen by Steve Rosenberg [COCHS], an independent jail monitor. CorrectHealth’s tenure got off to a rocky start that included missed intake screenings and insufficient staffing.
Death and politics roil a Georgia jail
In Savannah, an independent monitor (COCHS) cited widespread problems in the mental health care provided to suicidal inmates. As deaths mounted, the monitor was forced out. COCHS described staff shortages, unclear health guidelines and failures to give inmates prescribed medications. Such failings, they warned, could trigger “potential loss of life.”
Nassau County, New York: 2016 - 2017
In 2016 the Attorney General's Office in the State of New York, through NASSAU County Counsel, contracted with COCHS to provide on-site technical assistance to assess and provide on-going monitoring of the healthcare provided by the contracted provider. COCHS was required to provide recommendations for improved healthcare delivery and continuity-of-care. COCHS engagement involved using pre-established performance indicators for the purpose of establishing compliance/non-compliance with contract requirements and deliverables and associated penalties for failure to meet established pay for performance (P4P) thresholds. To accomplish the objectives, COCHS met with correctional management and healthcare staff to perform ongoing auditing and monitoring. COCHS provided weekly on-site monitoring of the healthcare and subsequently performed monthly monitoring independent of the County monitor.
Nassau Hires Jail Medical Monitor After Alleged Neglect
Long Island Press
Nassau County lawmakers hired a jail heath service monitor on Monday after New York State authorities accused the county jail’s medical provider of neglecting to prevent the deaths of at least five inmates. The company will make sure that Florida-based Armor Correctional Health Medical Services, the current health care provider at Nassau jail, complies with its contract.
Vermont Department of Corrections: 2013 - 2015

The Vermont Department of Corrections contracted with COCHS to determine how best to design a pay for performance (P4P) contract for correctional healthcare services. In 2011, the state legislature passed “The War on Recidivism Act” (Act 41), aimed at stemming the growth of the state’s correctional population. Among its provisions, Act 41 authorized a study into how the Vermont Department of Corrections (DOC) could best provide quality health services to inmates for less cost. COCHS interviewed multiple stakeholders throughout the state on how best to meet the needs of justice-involved individuals. COCHS used this feedback to develop the criteria for developing a P4P request for proposal (RFP). Included in this RFP was specifications for an EHR to replace the department's existing system.

Development of a Performance-Based RFP for Correctional Health Care Services in Vermont
This issue paper examines the policy environment that prompted the Vermont DOC’s health care system, in partnership with community-based organizations, to develop the first statewide performance-based Request for Proposals (RFP).
Task Force on Behavioral Health and the Criminal Justice System, New York City: 2014

COCHS provided consultation to Mayor Bill de Blasio's Task Force on Behavioral Health and the Criminal Justice System. COCHS worked with team members from the GAINS Center to create a sequential intercept map for New York City. For each sequential intercept point, COCHS and team members identified opportunities to divert individuals away from the criminal justice system and how these opportunities might be funded by Medicaid. COCHS expertise identified legal and regulatory barriers for Medicaid funding.

New Jersey Office of the Attorney General: 2009 - 2010

In 2010 the Attorney General's Office in the State of NJ contracted with COCHS to provide on-site technical assistance to 4 jurisdictions throughout the state to improve health care for people incarcerated in and released from custody in county jails. COCHS engaged with these jurisdictions to assess the status of and make recommendations on the healthcare delivery and re-entry services. COCHS conducted monthly on-site visits with corrections officials, healthcare providers and community stakeholders to determine the overall status of each entity's role in these processes and to facilitate the delivery of appropriate and timely health care and improved continuity of care for individuals incarcerated in these jurisdictions. COCHS had a direct impact on in each jurisdiction; namely, improved, unobstructed access to health care, creation and implementation of a wide range of health care protocols, policies and procedures that were not in place at the time of COCHS' engagement.

Marion County, Florida (Ocala): 2007 - 2008
With technical support from COCHS, former Sheriff Ed Dean replaced a for-profit healthcare vendor that formerly managed the Marion County jail’s medical unit and in its place launched Ocala Community Care (OCC) a community-based, not-for profit organization charged with providing health care to 2,000 jail inmates.
Ocala Community Care marks 10 years of helping jail inmates
Ocala Star Banner
Ocala Community Care is modeled after Community Oriented Correctional Health Services (COCHS), used by the Hampden County Sheriff’s Department in Massachusetts. Ocala's jail holds 1,500 inmates: 60% are taking some sort of medication; 5% of the population is responsible for 40% of the total medication costs due to HIV infections, and 30% of the population is on psychotropic medications.
Inmate health care at Marion jail improves under community group
Ocala Star Banner
Sheriff Ed Dean replaced PHS, a proprietary healthcare vendor for correctional institutions, with a newly formed local nonprofit organization called Ocala Community Care. The Marion County Jail is now one of the few jails in Florida with community-based inmate medical care. Sheriff Dean consulted with COCHS while laying the groundwork for the OCC. Data shows costs have been kept down while the quality of care has improved.
Ocala Community Care Launches in Florida
COCHS Connection
On January 2, 2008 the Marion County (Fl) Sheriff’s Office launched Ocala Community Care (OCC), a community-based, not-for-profit organiza-tion charged with providing health care to the county’s 2,000 jail inmates, replacing the for-profit contractor that formerly managed the jail’s medical unit. Sheriff ed Dean has been the driv-ing force behind this innovative initiative. Sheriff Dean describes how OCC came about, its goals, challenges,and vision for the future.
Washington D.C. Mayor’s Office (2006)
Washington D.C. Mayor’s Office contracted with COCHS to facilitate the largest community health provider in the District, Unity Health Care, become the health service provider inside the walls of the DC Department of Corrections.
Department of Corrections Institutes Community-Oriented Healthcare for Inmates
DC Department of Corrections
DC Department of Corrections announced that on October 1, 2006, the Department entered in partnership with Unity Health Care to institute a model of community-oriented healthcare services for individuals in District’s detention facilities. This model of healthcare was established in Hampden County, MA in 1992. The model views inmates as temporarily displaced members of the community and uses community health centers as a link to care both in-and-out of jail.