Compassion & Conscience: What Medical Professionals Need To Know About Treating Criminals

When you work in the healthcare profession, you will likely treat a variety of patients. Some could be sweet elderly individuals who wouldn’t give you any kind of trouble while others might be frightened and try to resist treatment. You will also probably treat a few criminals in your profession. It’s important to overlook the fact that these patients are criminals as it could impact the treatment that is given. Instead, keep a few things in mind so that treating them is like treating every other patient.

Keep Everyone Safe

Sometimes, you might wonder why someone would commit a crime in the first place. There are multiple reasons as to why someone might veer to the wrong side of the tracks in life, such as needing money to support the family or not understanding the actions that are taking place because the mind is altered by drugs. An opportunity blocker is an option to prevent people from committing crimes, which would decrease the number of criminals you would treat. Cameras can be installed, and areas can be marked to alert potential criminals that they are being monitored.

Maintain a Professional Nature

Even if you know that you’re treating someone who has committed a crime, you need to be professional about the situation. Think about your ethics training and learning about the Hippocratic oath, vowing that you would provide care to all patients regardless of their circumstances. The training you received might have been while you were obtaining a masters of science in nursing online or at a physical institution. Push aside any feelings of judgment as these should be left for the judge to decide.

Calm Their Fears

When a criminal is being treated in a medical setting, that person could be afraid. There are probably numerous thoughts running through their mind as an officer is usually at the bedside. The person sometimes has handcuffs on to prevent any possibility of running away or hurting staff. Try to talk to the criminal like any other patient, letting that person know that everything will be done to correct the medical condition.

Don’t Hold Back Treatment

It’s sometimes easy to think that a criminal might not deserve a certain kind of medication or treatment option. This is a thought that needs to be put out of the mind. Avoid holding back medications and treatments that other patients would receive just because the person is considered a criminal. That person needs a chance as well.

Treating a criminal should be like dealing with any other patient. There are times when you might need to go to the prison to offer treatment or when the criminal is brought to you right after a crime has occurred. Work with law enforcement and other people in the community to help deter criminals so that they can receive treatment as an ordinary citizen.

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