Missouri prisons seek to help aging inmates

1 year 2 months 11 minutes ago March 28, 2016 Mar 28, 2016 Monday, March 28 2016 Monday, March 28, 2016 4:07:00 PM CDT in News
By: Nina Amedin KOMU 8 Reporter, Shannon Shaver KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

JEFFERSON CITY- There is an increased number of aging inmates in the United States.

As an inmate ages, their medical needs increase, and Missouri is working to find more ways to accommodate those who need medical assistance in prison.

The U.S. Federal Bureau of Prisons spent more than $1 billion on health-care expenses from 2006- 2013.

The Missouri Department of Corrections Director George Lombardi said Missouri prisons have also seen increase in health care expenditures.

“Just the fact that the population has risen means there more offenders in the population that have severe medical needs. It has a lot to do with their lifestyle on the outside. Many of them are substance abusers, alcohol abusers, etc., which brings the onset of older diseases earlier than most people,” Lombardi said. 

Lombardi said mandatory minimum sentences also put people in prison longer, and they’re there in prison at a later age.

“Mandatory minimum sentences and no parole sentences place a lot of our offenders in the prison system, and they will then live their life out in the prison because of that.”

Five Missouri prisons now have enhanced-care units.

Enhanced-care units are places in the prison in which inmates who require daily medical assistance can live.

“It gives the offender the opportunity to get out and around with their offender helper,” Lombardi said.

Lombardi said prisoners volunteer to help because they feel they could be in a similar state in a few years. 

The enhanced-care units are helpful because in “many ways some people pre-hospice,” Lombardi said.

Missouri Hospice and Palliative Care Association (MHPCA) CEO Jane Moore brought the idea of developing a hopsice training curriculum for Missouri prisoners to Lombardi.

The program would allow interested inmates to help their fellow offenders as they pass away and during the last moments of their lives. 

Moore said after the Department of Corrections (DOC) and Lombardi approved the idea, she contacted hospices around the state and gathered interested volunteers to help develop the hospice training program.

Moore said volunteers first met in March of 2013 and held their first training session for prisoners at Jefferson City Correctional Center in May of 2015. 

"It was very rewarding for all those that put the time and work into this program," stated Moore in an email to a KOMU 8 News reporter.

MHPCA contines to coordinate the trainings, create certificates and put together evaluations.

There are now hospice-trained offenders at Jefferson City Correctional Center, the Women’s Correctional Center in Chillicothe, Tipton Correctional Center in Tipton and Southeast Correctional Center in Charleston.

“It has a positive impact on the morale of the prisons, it maybe makes it a little bit safer when they know the fact that when their time comes they will be helped,” said Lombardi.

The Department of Corrections plans to continually set up more enhanced-care units in prisons throughout Missouri.

Editor's note: This story has been updated to reflect new comments from Jane Moore.  

More News

Grid
List
MORGAN COUNTY - The National Weather Service (NWS) from Springfield, Missouri has conducted a review of damage in extreme southeastern... More >>
56 minutes ago May 28, 2017 May 28, 2017 Sunday, May 28 2017 Sunday, May 28, 2017 6:09:00 PM CDT in Top Stories
COLUMBIA – Volunteer security guards and local police officers are making sure the 29 th Annual Salute to Veterans Air... More >>
5 hours ago May 28, 2017 May 28, 2017 Sunday, May 28 2017 Sunday, May 28, 2017 1:43:00 PM CDT in News
BRANSON, Mo. (AP) — Authorities have recovered two bodies and are searching for a third person after their vehicle was... More >>
5 hours ago May 28, 2017 May 28, 2017 Sunday, May 28 2017 Sunday, May 28, 2017 1:38:00 PM CDT in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Relatives of two of four people killed when a steam-filled tank weighing nearly 2,000 pounds (900... More >>
5 hours ago May 28, 2017 May 28, 2017 Sunday, May 28 2017 Sunday, May 28, 2017 1:33:00 PM CDT in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — St. Louis police say a man who barricaded himself inside a home repeatedly fired at officers... More >>
1 day ago May 27, 2017 May 27, 2017 Saturday, May 27 2017 Saturday, May 27, 2017 6:54:00 PM CDT in News
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Kansas City, Missouri, police say they are searching for a man who shot two people,... More >>
1 day ago May 27, 2017 May 27, 2017 Saturday, May 27 2017 Saturday, May 27, 2017 6:46:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - A new business pushes it’s clients to their limit and has them sweating bullets. Two former NFL... More >>
1 day ago May 27, 2017 May 27, 2017 Saturday, May 27 2017 Saturday, May 27, 2017 5:06:00 PM CDT in Sports
COLUMBIA - A resettlement agency supporting refugees had a surplus in donations, so it decided to sell some of its... More >>
1 day ago May 27, 2017 May 27, 2017 Saturday, May 27 2017 Saturday, May 27, 2017 4:47:00 PM CDT in News
As of 6:00 p.m. 23,491 Electric Cooperative member-consumers are without power As of 5:37 p.m. Saturday, Ameren reports that... More >>
1 day ago May 27, 2017 May 27, 2017 Saturday, May 27 2017 Saturday, May 27, 2017 4:21:00 PM CDT in Top Stories
JEFFERSON CITY - Traditional Native American food, crafts and dancing can be found at the tenth annual "For the People"... More >>
1 day ago May 27, 2017 May 27, 2017 Saturday, May 27 2017 Saturday, May 27, 2017 3:48:00 PM CDT in Top Stories
COLUMBIA - Two teens were arrested early Saturday morning in relation to an armed robbery Friday night. Columbia Police... More >>
1 day ago May 27, 2017 May 27, 2017 Saturday, May 27 2017 Saturday, May 27, 2017 3:46:00 PM CDT in Top Stories
BOONE COUNTY - One person was extricated from a vehicle and taken to the hospital with serious injuries after a... More >>
1 day ago May 27, 2017 May 27, 2017 Saturday, May 27 2017 Saturday, May 27, 2017 2:53:00 PM CDT in Top Stories
COLUMBIA— The start of the ninth annual Pedaler’s Jamboree was held on Saturday. Nine years ago when the event... More >>
1 day ago May 27, 2017 May 27, 2017 Saturday, May 27 2017 Saturday, May 27, 2017 2:24:00 PM CDT in Continuous News
COLUMBIA - The 29th Annual Salute to Veterans Air Show is scheduled for Saturday, May 27, and Sunday, May 28... More >>
1 day ago May 27, 2017 May 27, 2017 Saturday, May 27 2017 Saturday, May 27, 2017 2:10:00 PM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Three people were taken to hospitals by emergency personnel following a three-car wreck Saturday morning. A... More >>
1 day ago May 27, 2017 May 27, 2017 Saturday, May 27 2017 Saturday, May 27, 2017 1:08:00 PM CDT in Top Stories
COLUMBIA – Public pools in Columbia opens for Memorial Day weekend, but they are still looking for more people to... More >>
1 day ago May 27, 2017 May 27, 2017 Saturday, May 27 2017 Saturday, May 27, 2017 11:29:00 AM CDT in News
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (AP) — Two months after the idea was first introduced to leaders in Springfield, Missouri, the city's new... More >>
1 day ago May 27, 2017 May 27, 2017 Saturday, May 27 2017 Saturday, May 27, 2017 11:13:00 AM CDT in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — St. Louis police say a man who exchanged gunfire with officers during an hours-long standoff has... More >>
1 day ago May 27, 2017 May 27, 2017 Saturday, May 27 2017 Saturday, May 27, 2017 11:09:00 AM CDT in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 74°
7pm 76°
8pm 73°
9pm 67°
10pm 65°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

7:00p
American Ninja Warrior
8:00p
American Ninja Warrior
10:00p
KOMU 8 News @ 10
6:00p
A Thousand Words
8:00p
Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW

Tonight's Schedule

7:00p
American Ninja Warrior
8:00p
American Ninja Warrior
6:00p
A Thousand Words
8:00p
Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Seinfeld