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Annu Rev Public Health. 2016;37:313-33. doi: 10.1146/annurev-publhealth-032315-021420. Epub 2016 Jan 18.

A Review of Opportunities to Improve the Health of People Involved in the Criminal Justice System in the United States.

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School of Public Health, City University of New York, New York, NY 10027; email: ,
Hunter College, New York, NY 10035.


In the past decade, many constituencies have questioned the efficacy, cost, and unintended consequences of mass incarceration in the United States. Although substantial evidence now demonstrates that US incarceration policies have had unintended adverse health consequences, we know less about the strategies and policies that can prevent or reduce these problems for justice-involved individuals and how the criminal justice system (CJS) can contribute to the Healthy People 2020 national goal of eliminating inequities in health. This review examines strategies that have been used to improve the health of people at various stages of CJS involvement, including diversion from jail and prison stays into community settings, improvements to the social and physical environments within correctional facilities, provision of health and other services to inmates, assistance for people leaving correctional facilities to make the transition back to the community, and systems coordination and integration.


correctional health; health equity; health interventions; jails; mass incarceration; prisons

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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