NCSL Brief: Providing Health Care Coverage for Former Inmates

The National Conference of State Legislatures examines programs states have implemented to provide health care coverage for former inmates in a briefing paper funded by the State Health Care Spending Project, an initiative of The Pew Charitable Trusts and the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation.

Among the challenges people being released from correctional facilities face is not having the resources to obtain the health care services they need to be successful in reintegrating into their communities. Inmates have a higher prevalence of behavioral health disorders and chronic and infectious diseases than the general population. These include conditions such as mental illness, substance abuse, AIDS and hepatitis C. Most former inmates lack health insurance and they also may not have the knowledge or navigational skills needed to access services through the state’s publicly funded behavioral health programs.

Read the entire brief.

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