Another lawsuit claims negligent care by Richmond County jails medical service provider

John Lee was so ill that by the time he was released from the Richmond County jail, it took two months to get his diabetes and anxiety under control. He still suffers panic attacks if he has to come to Augusta, according to the most recent lawsuit filed against the medical service provider the city pays millions of dollars to care for inmates.

Lee filed at least two grievances about lack of medical care while at the Charles B. Webster Detention Center in 2017. His federal lawsuit against Correct Care Solutions contends his heart condition, diabetes and panic attacks were under control with 10 medications before he was jailed for a city code violation. While in jail, according to the lawsuit, he got no heart medication, only a fraction of the medicine for diabetes and nothing for the panic attacks, which a medical worker at the jail told him were just his imagination.

Lee claims his blood sugar soared as high as 400 while he was in jail. Normal is around 100.

The lawsuit alleges that Roscoe Rhodes, who was arrested for drunken driving in 2016, nearly died from an asthma attack. He required CPR and ventilation during 10 days in the hospital. According to the lawsuit, he got none of his medication except for occasional breathing treatments he was prescribed four times a day.

The lawsuit also describes Morgan Mizell’s 2017 incarceration in which he lost 100 pounds in 10 months. Two months after his release, he was diagnosed with esophageal/stomach cancer, according to the lawsuit. Mizell contends he received no medical care in jail even though he was throwing up every day.

None of the people named in the lawsuits say they saw a physician while incarcerated, and Lee, Mizelle, Debra Leverett and Angelia Owen specifically reported never seeing a doctor.

Correct Care Solutions media contacts did not response to requests for comments.

According to the $5.39 million annual contract with Correct Care Solutions, a company physician works only 20 hours a week at the jail with 1,275 inmates and the 220 inmates at the Richmond County Correctional Institution.

In 2010, the contract included 40 hours for a physician. The American Academy of Family Physicians in 2013 recommended a patient load of 93.2 each week. The average visit was about 20 minutes.

Leverett was never seen by a doctor despite repeatedly seeking medical help, according to a lawsuit filed on behalf of her children. She died on the floor of a jail cell May 1, 2016. .

According to documents filed last month in that case, jail inmates filed 15,000 grievances from 2010 to 2018. Two thousand were filed in 2016, the year Leverett died. Of the 15,000 grievances filed, none were deemed valid.

Since 2011, 15 people have died in the county jail, including 51-year-old Charles Marten, a paraplegic who died a week after being incarcerated. He was found unconscious in his cell in March 2017.

Last year had the highest number of deaths so far, with four.

 




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