Plan To Fix Prison Healthcare

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(Sacramento, CA)
Thursday, May 10, 2007

If you ask Robert Sillen to name the most important part of his plan, he has no trouble answering:

 “The number one priority is recruitment and hiring of qualified people.”

His 50-page action plan includes more hiring and training of staff.  He also plans to create electronic medical records.  Sillen wants to form special medical response teams to visit prisons experiencing a health crisis.  And he plans to tighten up budgeting and accounting practices.  As for how much it might cost?  Sillen says he doesn’t know exactly, but it won’t be cheap:

 “It’s going to cost more than the state wants to spend and it always has – that’s why they never spent it and that’s what got them into the trouble they’re in now.”

A federal judge appointed Sillen last year to take over the state’s prison medical system, after he found conditions there violated the constitution’s protection against cruel and unusual punishment.