Thought Leadership

Corizon Health CEO Steve Rector offered the following statement in response to Federal Judge Magistrate David K. Duncan’s court order issued earlier today:

“Today’s ruling by Federal Magistrate Duncan against the Arizona Department of Corrections (ADC) unfortunately fails to recognize the progress and improvement that is and has been the reality of inmate health care since the ADC engaged in a settlement with ACLU plaintiffs in 2014.

As the healthcare provider chosen after the plaintiff’s lawsuit was initiated, Corizon Health has worked diligently with the ADC to increase and meet compliance with the 849 measurements contained in the law suit settlement. That progress now reflects exceeding minimum compliance rates on 90 percent or more of the measures. With an average of more than 4,100 patient encounters a day, Corizon Health is successfully providing an exceptional level of health care to Arizona’s prison population.

This ruling, combined with the loss of millions in taxpayer dollars that will be paid to American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) attorneys, negatively impacts critical funds needed to meet the requirements of the settlement and it also demonstrates ACLU’s higher regard for pursuing their stated public policy objective of reducing inmate populations. This legal battle unfortunately also underlines why incarceration policy is best made under the direction of Arizona’s elected policy leaders, the Governor and state legislature and not in courtrooms.

Make no mistake, be it Corizon or any other private healthcare provider, the ACLU will attack the mere existence of private healthcare providers in our prison system and its levels of incarceration, regardless of any accomplishments by a provider.

This charade by the ACLU is sad for the taxpayers of Arizona and for the inmate population we serve. Though Corizon Health was not a party to this suit, we will continue to work closely with ADC to provide Arizona’s inmate population with the best care in what is often difficult circumstances. We are hopeful the State of Arizona will choose to appeal the Court’s decision and we look forward to continuing to work constructively in supporting the ADC’s and Corizon Health’s steadfast improvement in the delivery of health care.”

By: Pam Duncan, RN, Oncology Manager, Corizon Michigan Regional Office

October is Breast Cancer Awareness month and reminders to the public are everywhere; pink ribbons to remember to get your mammogram or encourage your friend, mother, sister, or loved one to participate in getting screened for breast cancer.

But what about our female offenders? Female offenders account for roughly 7 percent of the incarcerated population in state and federal prisons. What are we doing to assure our female prisoners are screened for breast cancer? The Michigan Corizon Team has implemented a unique mammography program for female offenders that is achieving a 95 percent compliance rate for annual exams. Continue reading

By Mariann Burnetti-Atwell, Psy. D., CCHP, Senior Vice President of Behavioral Health Operations, Corizon Health

Several months ago, Corizon Health embarked on an initiative to eliminate suicides in the jails and prisons where we provide care. Corizon already had a strong record in suicide prevention, but we set this lofty – some would say impossible – goal because there simply is no number acceptable for completed suicides in a secure and supervised environment.

Yet, as a nation, the federal Department of Justice reports death by suicide in county jails is on the rise. The most recent federal Bureau of Justice Statistic reports showed the number of suicides in state prisons increased from 2013 to 2014 by 30 percent, an increase to 249 suicides from 192 the previous year. In local jails, suicide was the leading cause of death, accounting for a stunning 35 percent of all jail inmate deaths, a 13 percent increase from 2013 to 2014.

Continue reading

July has marked the one year anniversary of the of the Core Processes program. During this first year, the Core Processes Program has been implemented in our state and community contracts, with training provided to a variety of audiences and roles ranging from administrative support personnel to regional medial directors. The Core Processes Program has reached our western-most sites in the Pacific Northwest to our southernmost sites on the east coast. Though the reach of the program touches both coasts and points in between, the foundation of what we do remains the same: Provide and/or support the delivery of safe patient care. Continue reading

by: Clayton Wheat, RN

You have been tasked with conducting a Gap Analysis for a process at your site. What are the next steps?

A Gap Analysis is the method used to review the status of each site’s current processes to determine if they meet Corizon Health’s standards-based Core Processes. Issues are identified that may be interfering with optimal performance of the site in terms of patient safety and efficiency for providing care. Continue reading

By: Tashima Ricks, Senior Correctional Nurse Specialist

Throughout the month of May, organizations across the country have been raising awareness of the importance of mental health. In line with this increased awareness, the Nursing Services Healthcare Support Team challenges each site to re-visit the Intake Core Process: Behavioral Health, and initiate dialogue with their site interdisciplinary team members to review the behaviors that increase the risk or exacerbate mental illness in the correctional setting. Continue reading

By: Becky Pinney, Senior Vice President of Nursing

“Bound by paperwork, short on hands, sleep, and energy…nurses are rarely short on caring.” – Sharon Hudacek, author of A Day Book for Nurses

As National Nurses Week approaches I would like to personally thank our nurses and other Corizon Health team members for your tireless work and dedication to delivering quality care. Each of you is providing an essential service to a population who critically needs our knowledge and professional caring. Continue reading

Corizon is entrusted to provide care to thousands of patients daily, and the safety of our patients is at the forefront of every encounter. This is why Safety is the foremost Corizon SMART value. Continue reading

As nurses we have been taught, throughout our years of training, about the need for providing patient education. The goal of our efforts is to provide the patient with easy-to-understand materials and information they can use to make informed choices about how they will participate in the management of their health issues.  It is easy, however, to become overwhelmed with our daily activities and not take the time to provide education that is easy to understand and gives the patient information they need to be a willing partner in their care plan. Fortunately, there are strategies that can help us achieve better success with educating our patient population. Continue reading

by: Jim Donovan, COO

At Corizon Health, 2017 is the year of exceeding expectations – an ambitious goal.

American Express’s annual Global Customer Service Barometer survey consistently finds that only 62 percent of customers believe companies meet their expectations and only 5 percent of companies exceed the expectations of their customers. In other words, 33 percent of companies fail to meet, much less exceed, client service expectations. Continue reading