Correctional Nursing

  1. I am a Nursing Director for the Indiana Department of Correction - I've been in correctional nursing for almost 10 years and have worked in a variety of prisons both male and female. In response to Cher-Lynn's question - the pros depend upon the facility - each security level (minimum through maximum) has its own unique type of clientele and unique types of problems. The patient turn over is higher in minimum security facilities because the inmates are serving shorter sentences - so the majority of your day may be spent doing sick call, transfer screens, med pass, and discharge planning. In higher security levels the inmates are there longer so there is actually some case management, organized patient educational activities, and prevention activities which get done. The work is very diverse and the types of problems you would deal with range from malingering to trauma and acute MI's The cons: sometimes custody officers are not the easiest to deal with particularly when the facility is short staffed and the officers are working mandatory over time (depending upon the staff of the facility - the nurses may also be on mandatory OT), some inmates are not easily to get along with but I've never been in a position where I felt threatened - and I had difficult patients working in the ICU of the county hospital. Depending upon how the health services program is funded, you may be dealing with managed care guidelines or you may be in a facility which provides care which exceeds that of the community - Nurses have more trouble in the "cadillac" programs. If you want to know more let me know - my e-mail address is Rvais@aol.com
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