Congratulations Maricopa County Correctional Health Services! The National Commission on Correctional Health Care (NCCHC), upon the recommendation of its Accreditation Committee, has selected the Maricopa CountyJail System to receive this year’s NCCHC R. Scott Chavez Facility of the Year Award. This award is presented each year to only one facility selected from among the 500 jails, prisons, and juvenile confinement facilities that participate in NCCHC’s nationwide accreditation program.
Maricopa County Correctional Health wins 2016 NACo Achievement Award in Health
The National Association of Counties (NACo) is pleased to grant Maricopa County a 2016 Achievement Award for its program
titled “Streamlined Jail Intake Health Screening” in the category of Health. Collaborating with the electronic health record
vendor CHS was able to streamline the health screening process. The revised process allowed for the rapid identification of
patients in need of medical attention by focusing on key physical and behavioral health factors. Decreased clinical and officer
time spent per health screen are tangible results.
CHS is a member of the Smart Justice Committee which is composed of various County justice
agency partners and representation from Mercy Maricopa Integrated Care. Smart Justice has
adopted working goals to reduce recidivism back to the criminal justice system for individuals
with moderate to high risk to recidivate and to reduce length of stay in jail for low risk individuals
booked into jail. Two Smart Justice goals specifically address these aims for the SMI designated population
Stepping Up is a national initiative to rally national, state and local leaders around the goal to reduce criminal
justice involvement, especially jail and prison time, for individuals dealing with serious mental illness and
substance abuse disorders. Maricopa County signed a Stepping Up Proclamation in May 2015 and was one of 50 Counties
selected to attend the National Stepping Up Summit in April 2016. CHS has adopted practices to identify these individuals
at the initial stages of booking to explore every opportunity to reduce criminal justice involvement for this population.
Our practices include continuing and coordinating care from and with community providers, prioritizing community transition
planning; targeting and addressing the risk factors that lead to recidivism; and developing baseline data so we can track
outcomes and measure our success or need to improve our practices to reach the goal. We engage in collaborative “Stepping Up”
efforts in the community with other behavioral health agencies, family advocates and interested stakeholders to better share
information and to advocate for the needs of vulnerable populations to reduce unnecessary criminal justice involvement.
CHS is implementing the SAMSHA recommended S-BIRT system (Screening, Brief Intervention, Referral and Treatment).
All individuals who remain in custody past Initial Appearance receive a health assessment which includes evidence
based alcohol and drug screening questions. CHS aims to provide further substance abuse assessment to moderate
to high needs individuals to determine the need for substance abuse programming in jail and referral to community
treatment. CHS staff work to provide brief interventions to individuals with substance abuse problems to create
awareness and increase motivation for change.
Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT)
Correctional Health Services (CHS) provide medical services for over 7,000 patients in six jails. Four of those
jails have Opioid Treatment Program (OTP) certification. Estrella, Lower Buckeye, Towers, and 4TH Ave jails
currently provide continuity methadone treatment for patients who were already enrolled in a methadone program
in the community, prior to arrest. Because of this, patients no longer need to have their methadone stopped
when they get arrested, likely reducing relapses of opioid abuse, upon release to the cmmunity. In addition,
methadone is provided to pregnant patients who are opioid dependent, in order to protect the fetus. CHS also
works in collaboration with the drug courts to offer Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT) to patients suffering
from opioid dependence, in which those at high risk for opioid relapse are started on methadone in jail. The
Opioid Treatment Program includes administration of methadone, mental health counseling, and discharge planning.
All of these components are integral to a successful program, in an effort to prevent future relapse on opioids.
Trauma Informed Care:
CHS provides training to staff regarding the prevalence of trauma exposure in an incarcerated population.
Clinical Care Guidelines for treating trauma survivors have been adopted and implemented.
CHS is a trauma informed care facility.