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Jail Medical Alert!

We all know there are serious problems with medical and mental health services in the Sonoma County jails, both the Main Adult Detention Facility (MADF) and the Honor Farm. The Purple Berets have been working on many fronts to correct these deadly medical conditions.

Hands Through Jail BarsOne of those fronts is this: The jail's medical services are currently being evaluated by the California Medical Association to see if they will receive accreditation by the Institute for Medical Quality (IMQ). The jail lost this accreditation during its deadliest year in 1997/98, but is attempting to be reaccredited at this moment.

The Institute for Medical Quality needs to hear directly from inmates and inmates' families about your personal experiences with jail medical and mental health services. You should file a complaint with the IMQ if you or a loved one has experienced:

  • Not receiving, or long delays in receiving needed medical attention;
  • Not being referred to outside medical people when your condition is too severe to be treated by the jail;
  • Not receiving medications in a timely manner;
  • Not receiving medications at all, or receiving incorrect dosages or meds;
  • Insufficient monitoring of inmates who are detoxing from drugs or alcohol. (These inmates should at a minimum be under constant close observation by jail medical staff.)
  • Jail staff's failure to stabilize mentally ill inmates, or to prevent their psychiatric deterioration while in custody;
  • Failure to maintain mentally ill inmates' psychotropic medications;
  • Family members not being notified of inmate's serious illness or injury;
  • Or any other conditions you believe are medically harmful.

Send your complaint to:
Timothy Friedrichs, MD,
Chair Corrections & Detentions Health Care Committee
c/o Rebecca Craig,
Director Institute for Medical Quality
PO Box 7690 San Francisco, CA 94120-7690

All information sent to the Institute for Medical Quality is confidential and doesn't go on the public record. If you don't mind the information being public, send a copy to the Board of Supervisors, 575 Administration Dr. #100-A, Santa Rosa, CA 95403, and to the Purple Berets. If you have questions, or need help filing your complaint, give us a call at 707.887.0262.


© Tanya Brannan, Purple Berets
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