Quote from larry browne
Has anyone done the ground work for a policy and procedure manual for jails?
I work at a small jail. 200 inmates. I am the only nurse. I have looked and asked around and never came across a P&P for jails. We use the general rules from the state RE: a list of what medical tx the inmates are entitled to. Also, I developed a medical procedure for certain things such as a suicide policy and procedure, and med pass. I keep it all real simple and short. In my state, the officers can pass meds and are also held liable for any mistake that would cause harm. They have to be trained by a Doctor or an RN. The state says a jail is not a healthcare facility, and it is no different than giving someone their meds at home. The officers do not actually administer, they just deliver/provide it to the inmate. The officers do not apply topicals, ear gtts, eye gtts, injections or any kind of treatment. The inmate is an adult and can apply his/her own ointments and such. The officers do have first aid training and will cleanse an injury and apply butterflys, ice packs etc. if the nurse is out of the building. It took a while for me to get used to the idea. The commander will not let me pass meds as he feels it is a security risk. He and I have passed together maybe 3 times when security was short staffed. I am in charge of the meds and the cart though. I followed the officers on a med pass when I first started there. It was a nightmare, with the inmates surrounding the cart, making all sorts of noise and meds did come up missing. So, I bought a steel cart, solid on 3 sides and developed a procedure for the task. They all hated it at first, guards and inmates, but had to admit, following my new procedure cut med pass from a 2 hour nightmare to a 30 minute task. It is now very safe, no mistakes have occured, nor has any meds come up missing in 2yrs. My Doctor does not want a P&P manual. He thinks it's setting yourself up for failure and creates more liability. He said "it's safer to keep it simple, do what you were trained to do and you'll never have to worry."