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When a prisoner can't get medical care

Every human being deserves medical care when he or she is sick. However, New York residents who are serving time in prison might not always get the medical care they require. Whether it's due to prisoner neglect, negligence or wrongdoing -- if a prisoner can't get medical attention for a serious condition, it could be a violation of the prisoner's civil rights.

If you are worried about medical care for a family member serving time in prison, or if you're a prisoner being denied medical care, here's what you need to do:

-- Seek out your physician on the outside. Sometimes, prisons will allow a personal care provider to visit a prisoner at his or her correctional facility to administer medical care to the prisoner.

-- Ask a relative or friend to talk with the health care providers at your prison to highlight the fact that you need care.

-- if your relative cannot contact the health care providers at your prison, have your relative reach out to the medical director's office.

-- The New York state department of corrections website will have the contact information you need to reach the medical director's office.

-- Contact a lawyer.

A New York lawyer who assists prisoners in prisoners' civil rights issues can help you seek the medical attention you require. Your lawyer will review the facts of your case to pinpoint the most salient issues relating to your medical condition. Your attorney will then advocate for your civil right to receive medical attention in court if necessary.

Source: The Center for Prisoner Health and Human Rights, "Medical Care for Prisoners," accessed May 26, 2017

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