This report describes the National Institute of Justice’s (NIJ’s) two-part demonstration project on telemedicine for correctional facilities.
Providing healthcare within correctional facilities can be a challenging task that is lessened by the implementation of telemedicine systems. Telemedicine systems involve the use of interactive video to remotely connect two or more health care providers. An independent evaluation of the 1994 NIJ demonstration project involving the use of telemedicine at several Federal prisons concluded that telemedicine could be a cost-effective method for the provision of inmate healthcare. While telemedicine holds promise for many correctional facilities, these systems are not right for each and every facility. The report describes how to assess whether telemedicine is the correct choice for a particular correctional facility, which includes a medical requirement analysis and an evaluation of telemedicine options. Readers are directed to two NIJ publications for more information about telemedicine and its use in correctional facilities. Figures