by Allyson Walker
Image by Peter
Macdiarmid / Getty Images
Roughly two-thirds of the nearly 700,000 people released
from U.S. prisons each year will be rearrested and many will be back behind
bars within just three years of their release.
A Growing Problem
sure isn’t helping to reduce the incarceration rate in the United States, which
has been the highest in the world for over a decade. In fact, while the U.S.
represents only about 5% of the world’s population, it houses 25% of the
world’s prisoners. With a cost of $24,000
per inmate per year and $5.1 billion in new prison construction, criminal
correction spending is the
second-fastest growing budgetary item after Medicaid.
by Cyrus Heravi
Prisons across the U.S. are signing up
inmates for Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act, transferring a substantial
amount of inmate healthcare costs to the federal government.
Affordable Care Act is allowing
states to extend Medicaid coverage to
single and childless adults, a large part of the inmate population. This means
that standard inmate care is still provided and paid for by the states, but
hospital stays beyond 24 hours will be covered by Medicaid for signed up