Medical Kites / Medical Request Forms

  1. Do you use these in your correctional facility?

    Do you like them? Do you think they're a waste of time? Let me know!!
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    About juvynurse

    Joined: Oct '05; Posts: 34; Likes: 1
    Juvenile Corrections


  3. by   nurseT
    What do you mean by "medical kite"? Inmates telling you another inmate is sick?
  4. by   juvynurse
    No, and I apologize for using the term kites. It's the medical forms inmates use to request medical care.

    I'm curious how others handle medical complaints. Do they write out their complaints or do they verbalize their complaints?
  5. by   AdobeRN
    Where I worked the inmates had to put any request for medical care in writing unless it was some kind of emergency. There are drop boxes on all the pods, the inmates put the requests in writing and nursing staff picks up requests twice a day and hold sick call once a day. Most of the time inmates are seen within 24 hours of written request.
  6. by   BSNinTX
    I didn't know that term either; thanks.

    In the federal system, that would be a "cop-out." The formal term is an "Inmate Request to Staff."

    We use both written and face-to-face sick call requests. I like both. Written requests are good for routine things, such as "I will be out of medication next week, and I have no refills" or "I would like to discuss my lab results" or "I think it's time for my check up for my diabetes" or similar things. On the other hand, for acute issues I would like to talk to the patient and assess him, even if it's only a once over as he walks in and a brief chat. I would hate to get a written request with something like, "My stomach hurts." Something like that, and so many others, is usually a minor issue but can be huge.
  7. by   nurseT
    Quote from juvynurse
    No, and I apologize for using the term kites. It's the medical forms inmates use to request medical care.

    I'm curious how others handle medical complaints. Do they write out their complaints or do they verbalize their complaints?
    Oh, ours are labeled "Medical Request" and they must be specific in their complaint. I don't see anyone without a request, as a general rule, to keep some sort of order. However, there are exceptions. I make folllow up assessments and if there is an urgent or emergent need. I am the only nurse with a little over 200 inmates. If I didn't enforce some order, I would get pulled in a hundred directions all day and never accomplish anything. It's easier if you keep in mind that the jail is not a healthcare facility. I find them neccessary and helpful. I can triage who needs to be seen and who simply needs a written response by reading these.
  8. by   fiestynurse
    Medical Request Forms (or kites, as they are called in many facilities) are a very important documentation tool for a number of reasons and they are part of the NCCHC standards of care. Inmates are required to fill-out a kite for non-emergent or non-acute health issues. Of course, if an inmate is having chest pain or another life threatening acute episode - he should not have to fill out a kite - but should alert the Custody Officer and the nurse should respond ASAP.

    1) Confidentiality - These kites are generally put in a drop box or they can be handed directly to the nurses, as she makes rounds or passes medications. This is done to protect the confidentiality of inmate medical information. Custody Officers should not be reading these forms or handling them for that matter - this is an accreditation issue. Inmate/patient's should not have to discuss their health care issues with a Custody Officer.

    2) Triage - Medical kites allow for the triaging of inmate medical needs. The nurse can review the kites on a regular basis and attend to the more critical issues first. Other requests can be put on a sick call list. Most requests should be responded to within 48-72 hours. This is a more efficient way to provide care in a correctional facility. You get so many requests for health care, that you have to have good systems in place.

    3) Documentation - The kites go in to the inmate/patient's medical file. From a risk management stand point they are very useful in documenting what the medical complaint was in the inmate's own handwriting and how it was responded to. It shows that the inmate's have access to care and that all requests are being responded to in a timely manner. Very important!

    4) Inmate co-pays - Many facilities charge a co-pay to be seen by the nurse or the Practitioner. The kite can be used as a charge slip. Many kites have a space to document co-pay charges.
  9. by   uraqt2
    At our facility we use "medical kites" and I think its wonderful. To me it puts the responsibility on the inmates to request medical care. To me it's kinda like if you need a doctors appt. you call the office and make one. Well, that's the inmates way of calling the office since they don't have a phone. Not only that there is a written paper trail of interaction with the inmate. I can't tell you how many times it has proven valuable for me especially when inmates claim that they aren't being attended to or f/u with the doc. They may be a pain but to me they are a necessity.

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