The Newsroom • Published Tuesday, Jul. 25, 2006, 2:29 PM
Prison medical care system breaking down
Austin American-Statesman (Internet / Print) 07/25/06 The crisis building in the Texas prison system has several fronts, and one is medical care. As detailed in Monday's edition of the Austin American-Statesman by reporter Mike Ward, the system for providing medical care for prisoners is staggering; seriously short of doctors and nurses and unable to replace aging equipment such as broken X-ray machines. The current two-year state budget appropriates $375.8 million for prisoner medical care. But those in charge of that care — the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston and Texas Tech University — say $16.6 million more is needed to upgrade equipment and buildings and still another $32 million or more for operations through August 2007. And they estimate the next two-year budget cycle will require an increase of $122.1 million, pushing the total to more than $500 million.