Inmates in county jail will soon have to cough up some cash when they want medical attention. Call it a sort of "co-pay": Inmates will be asked next year to pay $3 when they ask to see a nurse. The fee is deliberately set low to keep health care accessible for most inmates, but sheriff's officials said the charge is also meant to curb frivolous visits that can tie up deputies and medical staff.
The fee comes at a time when health care demands in county jails have been increasing steadily. Inmates are now serving longer sentences as the jail population nears capacity.
No one in county jails will be denied medical attention, said Cmdr. Steve Kea of the Orange County Sheriff's Department. Those without the funds to cover the fee will be allowed to see a nurse at no charge, but inmates with a balance in their commissary accounts – money inmates can keep while in custody to purchase items in jail such as toothbrushes and food – will see the $3 fee deducted.
Read more at the OC Register