American College of Physicians*; National Commission on Correctional Health Care*; American Correctional Health Services Association*
The United States now incarcerates a greater percentage of its population than any other country: For every 100 000 persons, 426 are confined in prisons and jails (2). Most inmates are male, young, poor, and from minority groups. Most are substance abusers with substantial physical and mental health needs.
In the past decade, prison and jail populations doubled (3, 4), outpacing all attempts to increase the correctional system's ability to house and care for these inmates. From 1979 to 1988, direct governmental expenditures on corrections increased 216% (5). Despite this increase, at the end of 1990, prisons nationwide were estimated
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American College of Physicians*, National Commission on Correctional Health Care*, American Correctional Health Services Association*. The Crisis in Correctional Health Care: The Impact of the National Drug Control Strategy on Correctional Health Services. Ann Intern Med. 1992;117:71-77. doi: 10.7326/0003-4819-117-1-71
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Published: Ann Intern Med. 1992;117(1):71-77.
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Print ISSN: 0003-4819 | Online ISSN: 1539-3704
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