The folks at Pew have yet another invaluable study. This one involves state health care expenditures per-inmate. New Mexico comes in towards the very high end nationwide and, when compared with its neighbors, New Mexico’s big-spending ways are even more noticeable. See Pew data at this link and table below:
With health care expenditures increasing in prisons (just as elsewhere) this is yet another budget area grabbing additional dollars that we don’t have. In the past, RGF has recommended ideas like increased use of geriatric release. While it is the State’s job to keep prisoners healthy, there HAVE to be innovative ways for New Mexico to reduce the high cost of tending to the health needs of its prisoners.
For additional coverage of NM’s geriatric release policy challenges, check out this story from NM Indepth.