New GAO Report Recommends That Policies for Pregnant Women in DOJ Custody Align With National Guidelines
A new report from the Government Accountability Office noted that while the U.S. Marshals Service and the Bureau of Prisons have policies on pregnancy-related care, they do not always align with national guidance. GAO recommended that the Marshals Service and the Bureau take steps to more closely align their policies with national guidance on pregnancy-related care to ensure pregnant and postpartum women in their custody receive appropriate treatment and care.
Policy recommendations included conformance with national guidance on pregnancy-related treatment and care, data collection at intake, restrictions on the use of restraints, and data collection on the use of restrictive housing.
The Government Accountability Office contacted NCCHC in 2019 to provide expertise and information on standards of care for detained pregnant women. The project included a review of existing Immigration and Customs Enforcement standards, sharing of relevant NCCHC standards and position statements, and expertise from NCCHC staff, Jeff Alvarez, MD, CCHP-P, CCHP-A, NCCHC Board Representative from the American Academy of Family Physicians, and Carolyn Sufrin, MD, PhD, NCCHC Board Representative from the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.