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Conference on criminal justice health co-hosted by Emory

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The Academic Consortium on Criminal Justice Health (ACCJH) will present the 10th annual Academic & Health Policy Conference on Correctional Health on March 16-17 at the Atlanta Airport Marriott. The conference is supported by the University of Massachusetts Medical School and co-hosted by Emory University.

The conferencewill include sessions on implementing medication assisted treatment for opioid abuse, mental and behavioral health, substance abuse and dependence, juvenile justice, and the aging of inmates and re-entry, as well as a town hall featuring the perspectives of justice-involved individuals. A keynote address titled, "Mass Incarceration and Our Nation’s Health—Maximizing our Impact," will be presented by Warren J. Ferguson, MD, director of academic programs for UMass Medical School’s Health and Criminal Justice Program and co-founder and chair of the ACCJH.

"While we have made a lot of progress, we must increase our efforts to end mass incarceration across the country and, in turn, the effect justice involvement has on health," says Ferguson, also a professor and vice chair of UMass Medical School’s Department of Family Medicine & Community Health. "We created this conference 10 years ago to assist correctional administrators in their daunting task of providing health care to inmates while ensuring safety and managing tight budgets."

Co-chaired by Anne Spaulding, MD, MPH, associate professor at Emory’s Rollins School of Public Health and School of Medicine, the interdisciplinary, peer-reviewed conference on correctional health care and policy draws participants from more than 100 academic and correctional institutions around the world.

"This is an important conference for Georgia to host as the science behind improving the health of persons involved in the criminal justice system progresses," says Spaulding. "The conference will showcase work from not only Emory University but also from Augusta University, Georgia Tech, and Morehouse School of Medicine."

The town hall, "An Emerging Blueprint for Change – The Corrections/Academe Nexus: Voices from Justice-Involved Social Offenders," features the individual experiences of those who have been involved with the justice system.

This year’s plenary speaker, Dr. Fred Osher, director of health systems and health services policy at the Council of State Governments Justice Center, will discuss implementation science strategies from 9:45-11:00 a.m. on March 17. Osher is a psychiatrist with extensive experience in the development, delivery, evaluation and adaptation of evidenced-based practices within community settings, including correctional facilities.

On Saturday, March 18, there will be a post-conference educational meeting of the American College of Correctional Physicians at the conference hotel.

For more information about the ACCP continuing medical education event, see the American College of Correctional Physicians web site for the event.

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