Del. Dept. of Corrections initiates healthcare review

DOVER, Del. – Inmates and their health are the focus in the First State, and it’s all because of a new partnership between the Delaware Department of Corrections and Christiana Care Health System.

“Delivery of healthcare in correctional facilities or in people’s personal lives, it’s one of the most important things,” Claire DeMatteis, Commissioner of the Delaware Department of Corrections, said.

That’s why the Delaware Department of Corrections’s new partnership with the Christiana is so beneficial.

“It’s a good thing because it allows Christiana Care, who is a leader in healthcare in the state of Delaware, to come in and analyze what we’re doing,” Geoff Klopp, President of the Correctional Officers Association of Delaware (COAD), said.

And inmate healthcare is something the state of Delaware has been focusing on. Back in June, Governor John Carney signed House Bill 173, which expanded resources for the healthcare review committee, a committee that oversees inmate healthcare.

“This will definitely inform them and keep them very much updated on the recommendations from Christiana Care,” DeMatteis said.

And working hand in hand with other organizations is something that benefits not only the inmates, but workers inside of the jails throughout the First State.

“Hopefully it’ll enable us to get better healthcare to the inmates, which makes for a safer living environment and work environment for the correctional officers,” Klopp said.

And while this review will focus on healthcare across the board, officials say there are some areas that need to be focused on.

“We’re really working hard on the medication assisted treatment part of this, so that any inmate that has opioid addictions, we are helping them overcome those addictions while they’re in prison as much as we can,” DeMatteis said.

So this partnership is all about a shared goal.

“Ultimately our goal is to rehabilitate these people and put them into society where they are able to thrive,” Klopp said.

Categories: Delaware, Local News