Correctional health curriculum enhancement through focus groups

UMMS Affiliation

Department of Family Medicine and Community Health; Graduate School of Nursing

Publication Date


Document Type



Adult; *Curriculum; Education, Medical; Education, Nursing; Female; *Focus Groups; Humans; Male; Nurse Practitioners; Physician Assistants; *Prisons


Community Health and Preventive Medicine | Medical Education | Preventive Medicine | Primary Care


BACKGROUND: Little has been published describing curricular experiences in correctional health (CH).

PURPOSES: Our goal is to articulate a curriculum cognizant of the special needs of the correctional health care worker.

METHODS: We conducted focus groups with nurses, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, and physicians focused on content crucial to prepare competent medical professionals committed to careers in correctional health.

RESULTS: Six main themes emerged from the data, which were used to confirm and add to the growing curriculum on correctional health used in our university's correctional health electives. The themes are (a) characteristics of the population being served; (b) prevalent conditions requiring clinical expertise; (c) public health opportunities in correctional facilities; (d) ethical considerations; (e) medical-legal issues; and (d) the CH system, structure, and administration.

CONCLUSIONS: The successful provision of health care in correctional settings requires specialized knowledge, skills, and awareness not typically available in other health care training settings.

DOI of Published Version



Teach Learn Med. 2009 Oct;21(4):310-7. Link to article on publisher's site

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Teaching and learning in medicine

Related Resources

Link to Article in PubMed