New York Times: Palliative Care for Prisoners

Brie Williams, a geriatrician and director of the Criminal Justice Aging Project of Tideswell at the University of California San Francisco, has penned a letter calling for better palliative care services for prisoners.

“Even with optimal compassionate release policies, many older prisoners with serious illnesses will never surpass the administrative hurdles necessary to gain release from prison or indeed be eligible for such release. For these people, we must optimize prison-based palliative care,” says Williams.

Williams says palliative care is constitutional right and is among a growing group of professionals pushing for these services to be universally available to patients facing serious illnesses.

“As policy and lawmakers hone in on making compassionate release policies more effective, we must not lose sight of the pressing need to improve the quality of care delivered in prisons for all people facing serious, life-limiting illness regardless of whether or not they will ever reach freedom.”

Click here to read the full letter.

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