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Medical Problems Reported by Prisoners: Survey of Prison Inmates, 2016

NCJ Number
Laura M. Maruschak, BJS Statistician ; Jennifer Bronson Ph.D.; Mariel Alper, Ph.D., former BJS Statisticians
Date Published
June 2021
12 pages

Presents data on the prevalence of medical problems reported by state and federal prisoners, highlighting differences in chronic conditions and infectious diseases by demographic characteristic. Findings are based on self-reported data from the 2016 Survey of Prison Inmates.

  • About 51% of state and 43% of federal prisoners reported ever having a chronic condition, while 40% of state and 33% of federal prisoners reported currently having a chronic condition.
  • An estimated 17% of state and 10% of federal prisoners reported ever having an infectious disease.
  • Ten percent of state and 4% of federal prisoners reported ever having hepatitis C, the most common infectious disease reported.
  • More than a quarter of state (29%) and federal (26%) prisoners reported ever having high blood pressure, the most common chronic condition reported.

Date Published: June 2, 2021