Community Voices at Morehouse School of Medicine Releases Information on The Impact of Incarceration and Reentry on the African-American Community

Jan 08, 2007, 00:00 ET from Morehouse School of Medicine

    ATLANTA, Jan. 8 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Community Voices: Healthcare
 for the Underserved and the National Center for Primary Care at the
 Morehouse School of Medicine recently released, Where Are the Men? The
 Impact of Incarceration and Reentry on African-American Men and Their
 Children and Families.
     By the end of June 2005, over 2.1 million people were incarcerated in
 jails and prisons in the United States. Of those 548,300 were African-
 American males between the ages 20 to 39. The incarceration rates for all
 African-American males were five to seven times greater than those for
 white males. This mass incarceration has had a tremendous impact on the
 African- American community.
     The findings of Where are the Men? illustrate not only what attributed
 to this high incarceration rate amongst African-American men but also the
 affects that the absence of incarcerated African-American men have on their
 communities, families, politics and healthcare even upon reentry.
     Findings from Where Are the Men? also point out that with the increased
 incarceration of drug offenders also came prison overcrowding and inmates
 with chronic and infectious diseases such as HIV, tuberculosis, and
 hepatitis- overwhelming the prison health care system. Mental illnesses
 such as schizophrenia, anxiety disorder, post traumatic stress, depression
 and dysthymia also plagued inmates.
     Once released, individuals will return to their overburdened and
 underserved communities, children, and families in poor health and with
 limited or no access to healthcare resources ultimately exacerbating the
 impact of health disparities already evident in the community.
     Community Voices: Healthcare for the Undersevered is working to make
 health care available to all. With eight sites across the country and
 managed by the National Center for Primary Care at the Morehouse School of
 Medicine, Community Voices is helping to ensure the survival of safety-net
 providers and strengthen community support services.
     "We are at a point in the nation where we need to think about things
 differently," said Dr. Henrie Treadwell, director of Community voices and
 Associate Director of Development for the National Center for Primary Care
 at Morehouse School of Medicine. "Lack of resources to address behavioral
 and other health issues are part of the community context that gives rise
 to petty crime, addiction and violence."

SOURCE Morehouse School of Medicine