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Prevalence of Chronic Health Conditions Among Adults Released From the North Carolina Prison System, 2015-2016.
N C Med J 2019 Nov-Dec; 80(6):332-337NC

Abstract

BACKGROUND

In the United States each year nearly 570,000 people return from state prisons to the community. Prevalence data of chronic health problems for this population are lacking, impeding planning of health care programs to serve people with chronic conditions who are re-entering the community.

METHOD

We used medication dispensing records as a proxy for diagnoses in assessing the prevalence of 10 major and 20 substituent health conditions among incarcerated people released from the North Carolina state prison system from July 2015 through June 2016.

RESULTS

Among 20,585 released people, 13% were female; 50% were black; 43% were white; and 4% were aged 55 years or older. Thirty-three percent had ≥ 1 condition and 13% had two or more. The prevalence of chronic health conditions was the following: psychiatric, 15%; cardiovascular, 15%; neurologic, 7%; pulmonary, 6%; diabetes mellitus, 3%; and infectious, 3%. Seventy-one percent of those aged 55 years or older had a chronic medical condition. Among those with a psychiatric condition, 56% had another chronic illness.LIMITATIONS We could not identify unmedicated health conditions; medications prescribed across multiple disease categories were excluded from our analysis.

CONCLUSION

In North Carolina, at least one in three people released from the state prison system had a chronic health condition, and among those with psychiatric conditions, most had comorbid medical disease. Coordination of health care after release from incarceration is essential to avoid preventable complications and unnecessary utilization of acute care services. Greater eligibility for Medicaid is needed to scale up transition programs for this population.

Authors+Show Affiliations

assistant professor, UNC School of Medicine, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, North Carolina; adjunct assistant professor, Gillings School of Global Public Health, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, North Carolina drosen@med.unc.edu.internist, Novant Health, Winston-Salem, North Carolina.applications specialist, UNC Cecil G. Sheps Center for Health Services Research, Chapel Hill, North Carolina.professor of family medicine, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Medicine, Chapel Hill, North Carolina; director, Formerly Incarcerated Transition (FIT) Program.

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article

Language

eng

PubMed ID

31685564

Citation

Rosen, David L., et al. "Prevalence of Chronic Health Conditions Among Adults Released From the North Carolina Prison System, 2015-2016." North Carolina Medical Journal, vol. 80, no. 6, 2019, pp. 332-337.
Rosen DL, Thomas S, Kavee AL, et al. Prevalence of Chronic Health Conditions Among Adults Released From the North Carolina Prison System, 2015-2016. N C Med J. 2019;80(6):332-337.
Rosen, D. L., Thomas, S., Kavee, A. L., & Ashkin, E. A. (2019). Prevalence of Chronic Health Conditions Among Adults Released From the North Carolina Prison System, 2015-2016. North Carolina Medical Journal, 80(6), pp. 332-337. doi:10.18043/ncm.80.6.332.
Rosen DL, et al. Prevalence of Chronic Health Conditions Among Adults Released From the North Carolina Prison System, 2015-2016. N C Med J. 2019;80(6):332-337. PubMed PMID: 31685564.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Prevalence of Chronic Health Conditions Among Adults Released From the North Carolina Prison System, 2015-2016. AU - Rosen,David L, AU - Thomas,Shavonda, AU - Kavee,Andrew L, AU - Ashkin,Evan A, PY - 2019/11/6/entrez PY - 2019/11/7/pubmed PY - 2019/11/20/medline SP - 332 EP - 337 JF - North Carolina medical journal JO - N C Med J VL - 80 IS - 6 N2 - BACKGROUND In the United States each year nearly 570,000 people return from state prisons to the community. Prevalence data of chronic health problems for this population are lacking, impeding planning of health care programs to serve people with chronic conditions who are re-entering the community.METHOD We used medication dispensing records as a proxy for diagnoses in assessing the prevalence of 10 major and 20 substituent health conditions among incarcerated people released from the North Carolina state prison system from July 2015 through June 2016.RESULTS Among 20,585 released people, 13% were female; 50% were black; 43% were white; and 4% were aged 55 years or older. Thirty-three percent had ≥ 1 condition and 13% had two or more. The prevalence of chronic health conditions was the following: psychiatric, 15%; cardiovascular, 15%; neurologic, 7%; pulmonary, 6%; diabetes mellitus, 3%; and infectious, 3%. Seventy-one percent of those aged 55 years or older had a chronic medical condition. Among those with a psychiatric condition, 56% had another chronic illness.LIMITATIONS We could not identify unmedicated health conditions; medications prescribed across multiple disease categories were excluded from our analysis.CONCLUSION In North Carolina, at least one in three people released from the state prison system had a chronic health condition, and among those with psychiatric conditions, most had comorbid medical disease. Coordination of health care after release from incarceration is essential to avoid preventable complications and unnecessary utilization of acute care services. Greater eligibility for Medicaid is needed to scale up transition programs for this population. SN - 0029-2559 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/31685564/Prevalence_of_Chronic_Health_Conditions_Among_Adults_Released_From_the_North_Carolina_Prison_System,_2015-2016 L2 - http://ncmedicaljournal.com/cgi/pmidlookup?view=long&pmid=31685564 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -