Every year millions of your tax dollars dollars are spent on inmate healthcare in our county jails. Now lawmakers have made some changes so jail administrators can charge inmates up to 20 dollars for medical treatment.
Some counties in the east are taking advantage of the new policy.
Administrators say what they hope to do with this change is discourage inmates from abusing the jail healthcare system which ultimately will save money for taxpayers.
The $10 copay collected from inmates in Pitt County will double starting in November. Inmate healthcare in just Pitt County costs nearly $2million a year. Less than 2% of that is collected from those inmates. Jail administrators say that the a higher copay will put more responsibility on the inmate and reduce the amount of patients seen for reasons other than seeking care.
"Whether its to check out the security risk of the facility if there is any to try to escape or just to see a medical provider there to try to see that person for some other reason you never know what their interest are," said Jeff Phillips with the Pitt County Detention Center.