- Associated Press - Saturday, January 6, 2018

DETROIT (AP) - A Michigan university has contracted with the state Department of Corrections for three medical director positions.

Wayne State University will provide the prison system with a chief medical officer, a chief psychiatrist and an assistant chief medical officer, according to Crain’s Detroit Business .

Carmen McIntyre will serve as chief medical officer, Shahid Hussein as chief psychiatrist and James Blessman as assistant chief medical officer.

McIntyre said their roles as medical directors include setting policies, implementing best practices within the prison system and looking at health care outcomes data.

The physicians will work with Corizon Correctional Healthcare, the state’s in-prison health care provider. Specialty physicians within the university’s network will also be available for consultation, according to a university official.

The agency reached out to the university after having difficulty replacing several doctors who had retired or left, said Chris Gautz, a Corrections department spokesman.

“It is tough to attract doctors for these positions,” he said. “We tried on our own and reached out to other partners. Our director reached out to Wayne State and whether they could fill those critical positions for us.”

University medical, nursing, social work and pharmacy students will eventually be allowed to perform clinical rotations at some prison sites, Gautz said.

Several other universities are negotiating with the department to have clinical rotation opportunities for students, he added.

The Corrections department operates 30 prisons and 105 field offices.

McIntyre said giving students the opportunity to get involved with the community will likely increase the chances they stay in the state following graduation.

Copyright © 2018 The Washington Times, LLC.

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