Chronic Health Conditions and Behaviors Among Persons Entering Maximum Security Prison
Repository Posting Date2014-11-17T13:49:38Z
Author(s)Larson, Elaine; Apa, Zoltan L.; Bai, Jennifer; Befus, Montina B.; Lowy, Franklin D.; Mukherjee, Dhritiman
Author DetailsElaine Larson, RN, BSN, MA, PhD; Zoltan L. Apa, BS; Jennifer Bai, BS, MPH; Montina B. Befus, BS, MPH; Franklin D. Lowy, BA, MD; Dhritiman Mukherjee, PhD
Lead Author Sigma AffliationNon-member
Other Title(s)Culturally Diverse Health Behaviors
Session presented on Monday, July 28, 2014: Purpose: To describe health conditions and risk behaviors among persons entering maximum security prison in New York State. Methods: Between January 2011 and March 2013 as part of a study to assess the prevalence of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), male (n=426) and female (n=404) inmates at intake to two New York State maximum-security prisons were interviewed regarding demographic, social, and health issues, their medical records were reviewed, and anterior nares and oropharyngeal samples were collected. The majority (>96%) were entering from other jails or prisons. Results: Approximately one-third each were aged <30, between 30-40, or >40 years; 47% were black, 24% white, 20% Hispanic, and 8% other. The largest proportion (44%) had
50% of inmates were colonized with S. aureus; 5.9% of men and 10.6% of women were colonized with MRSA, a rate approximately 10 times higher than in the general population. Conclusion: Men and women entering prison have high rates of chronic health conditions and behaviors that increase their risk of disease and infection. Adequate provision of health services in prison is important to reduce morbidity and prevent transmission of infectious diseases within the prison and after parole.