California Now Limits Medical Parole To Those On Ventilators

Source: Associated Press

A new California policy could send dozens of quadriplegic, paraplegic or otherwise permanently incapacitated inmates from nursing homes back to state prisons.

Prison officials say a change in federal rules led them to limit medical parole to inmates so ill they are hooked to ventilators to breathe, meaning their movement is so limited they are not a public danger. The state previously included a much broader range of permanent incapacities allowing inmates to be cared for in nursing homes outside prison walls.

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California Assemblyman Phil Ting, who heads the powerful Assembly Budget Committee, is carrying a bill to expand the criteria and create an easier process for placing incapacitated inmates in community health care facilities.

“Limiting it to only those on ventilators is arbitrary and not based on medical science,” he said. “Public safety is not improved by taking such an unnecessarily narrow view of this policy.” ...