NDOC: Forty Five (45) Prisoner Deaths in One (1) Year

On Tuesday, July 7 at 9 am. NV-CURE President John Witherow will be interviewed on Nevada Public Radio 88.9 FM on this subject. 

This comes from our Informational Bulletin nr 12, 2015:

Forty five people have died in custody in Nevada’s prison facilities since August, 2014. Four committed suicide.

One was shot by a prison guard. One died of cardiovascular disease and the rest are either deaths caused, according to NDOC, by “medical condition”, unknown”, “natural”, or “prolonged illness”. We want to know the causes of death and whether any of these deaths are attributable to the Hepatitis C virus.

This information was provided to NV-CURE by an NPR Senior Producer Joe Schoenmann and former Correctional Officer Mark Clarke, whom we thank for their time and efforts regarding this matter.  We hope that further investigation will reveal the facts regarding each of these
deaths.

Not one noted death is from hepatitis C, even though we know that the prevalence of that disease is much higher than in the population at large and we know that NDOC gives very little treatment for this very treatable disease. Allegedly, many of these deaths are “under investigation”, and NV-CURE finally has volunteers willing to keep track of each death, order the coroner’s report, which is a matter of public record, if necessary, and log the deaths on a spreadsheet, making sure that the media, legislators and the US DOJ are made aware of the high number of deaths due to disease. It is estimated that 12-35% of prisoners nationwide are infected with the Hep C virus. We will never know exactly how many prisoners are infected with the disease, until we have testing, which the Nevada legislature and the NDOC refuse to provide.

NDOC claims that they are investigating the potential of providing hospice care, but we have seen no action yet on that claim.

On Tuesday, July 7 at 9 am. NV-CURE President John Witherow will be interviewed on Nevada Public Radio 88.9 FM on this subject. A recording of the program will be posted on our website, Nevaacure.org.  Thank you for your attention to this problem.

Concern about the high number of deaths in the NV Department of Corrections: a letter to ACLU-NV

This is the text of a letter that a member of Nevada Cure sent to the ACLU in Nevada about the high number of deaths in the custody of Nevada Department of Corrections (NDOC). Their response: just fill out their form. We have been gathering so much documentation on medical neglect since the class action lawsuit that ACLU settled with NDOC! 
We would like to see some more answers and pushes to real change, more transparency from ACLU and NDOC in this matter. The electorate and the taxpayers, but most of all, the people in prison have a right to know why so many people die inside of medical neglect or inadequate medical care, and what is being done to address this.

Nov. 15th, 2014:
Dear NV ACLU:
I am writing about my concern about the high number of deaths in the NV Department of Corrections.  Since I moved here 15 months ago, there have been 20+ deaths reported in the media with little or no information as to the cause of death.  As a matter of fact just today, I saw in the media that a 55 year old woman at FMWCC and a 28 year old man at High Desert both died!
It is well known that the NDOC does not treat hepatitis and perhaps many of these deaths are a result of painful deaths due to this disease? While I realize that HIPPA laws prohibit an individual’s medical conditions to be revealed publicly, our state government is charged with the health and welfare of it’s incarcerated population, no matter what.  
I moved here from Illinois where the IDOC was carefully and routinely monitored by the John Howard Association in Chicago who visited each facility over the course of every two years and distributed their findings publicly and to the state legislature about the conditions and problems at each facility. They have no authority over the IDOC but their public reports definitely have an impact on needed changes that are always found as a result of the tours and interviews with the staff and the inmates.  
Is anyone monitoring the NDOC, especially when it comes to the number of deaths among the inmates here?  I note that most of the deceased inmates are NOT old men/women but younger or middle age and not likely to be dying of “natural causes” that are associated with old age.  My husband is currently incarcerated with the NDOC and I am concerned for his welfare as well as the other American citizens who are not getting proper medical care.  
How can we as citizens of this state, get this critical issue addressed in Nevada?  
Thank you for your attention and I hope to get a response.
[G.A.]