Meds in jail first 30 days

  1. I work as an RN in a county jail. We all know the type...inmate comes in, hasn't been to their mental health clinic appointments in months, quit taking their medication, and started using street drugs to self medicate. Is there anyone out there who uses a protocol for 30 days of "clean time" before medications are started? Inmates come in and think, "you gave me Zoloft last time I was here and I need it now." However they have not followed up with any MD or taken medication while out of jail.
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    About amesly15

    Joined: Mar '03; Posts: 58; Likes: 5
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    3 Comments

  3. by   PsychGuy
    Yeah it's the plight of us morons who agree to manage inmate health. Same story everywhere.

    When I worked it, we didn't do antidepressants. We looked for the cheapest meds for HTN and DM and gave little more than 800mg ibuprofen or risperidone for behavior. The docs (nor jail staff) were unconcerned with anxiety, depression, insomnia, acne, HLD, etc. The policy, or some parts, were ruled unconstitutional later. Another liberal judge would probably say the same with your 30 day proposition. For that reason, I would work a correctional environment for any amount of compensation. Good luck and watch your back around the sharks.
  4. by   NottaSpringChik
    I work in a county jail for a big company that contracts for the medical care. We don't have an official policy that nothing can be started for 30 days, but if the patient is not current (have record of a filled prescription they would be using up to the current day) the medication can not be started without seeing a provider. Unless the patient is obviously psychotic or suicidal, it can take some time to get in to see the psychiatrist and start medication. 30 days probably wouldn't be an unusual time frame given all the steps the patient has to go through before having medication prescribed.
  5. by   Melanie6
    Nope. We have to ask them if they have filled any meds at a pharmacy and verify them, if they have been taken on a regular basis then we will get an order from our provider, but we may not give them all the meds they take. We don't give-trazadone, seroquel, Ativan, narcotics etc, but if they have been on Ativan regularly we will taper them off it

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