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Kansas Revises Care for Inmates After Controversial Case and Criticism

For over 3 years, inmates in Kansas state prisons suffered at the hand of a negligent and problematic health care provider. Records reflect that Tennessee company, Corizon Health, had a habit of delaying, postponing, or completely failing to provide care to those who needed it most.

A case handled by Dempsey & Kingsland, P.C. brought the public’s attention to Corizon Health and its many faults when a young man with a brain fungus died after the company ignored countless complaints.

One of our late client’s complaints was, “it feels like something is eating my brain,” but Corizon Health did not perform an MRI until it was too late. The scan showed a widespread fungal infection and irreversible swelling in the patient’s brain. Days later, he died. The man’s mother filed a wrongful death lawsuit.

News coverage and widespread criticism followed, and in April 2020, the state of Kansas severed its relationship with Corizon Health and announced its contract with a new healthcare provider.

The Kansas Department of Corrections Secretary stated:

The provision of health care services for our population is an essential part of our responsibility to provide care and prepare them for reentry to the community. Providing high quality health care that is consistent with community standards requires a partner who understands this responsibility.”

A Word From Our Attorneys

Our team at Dempsey & Kingsland, P.C. is proud to see this kind of change come from a case we handled. Partner Leland F. Dempsey explains:

As a lawyer practicing in the medical malpractice arena, I’m always glad when our work leads to positive change that helps increase safety for patients, even incarcerated patients. Our lawsuit arose out of the tragic death of 28-year-old Marques Davis at Hutchinson State Penitentiary, where he was repeatedly denied any meaningful treatment by the prison health service (a private ‘for profit’ company called ‘Corizon Health’) for his worsening infection.

Finally, after not being able to walk and being so out-of-his mind that he drank his own urine, he died. This was three years ago this month. Our lawsuit and the underlying tragedy were well-noticed and reported by the press and national media. The Associated Press and the Washington Post ran feature stories on our case. Even 60 Minutes and ABC News in New York contacted us. As a result of this publicity, the Kansas Senate began committee hearings on the state of Corizon Health, Inc., a hedge fund company that operated the ‘health services’ at all Kansas prisons and in almost half of the States in the Union. Today, Kansas made the decision to terminate its contract with this company. Thank goodness. These poor prisoners deserve decent health care.

Get Help With Similar Cases

If you are facing substandard health care in any situation, you have the right to pursue legal action. Dempsey & Kingsland, P.C. can help.

For assistance with a medical malpractice case of any kind, please call us at (816) 484-3776 or click here for a free consultation.