“Rumor has it that the SARS-CoV 2 virus was brought into prison via inmates who were on a work-release program. Allegedly, they boarded a city bus with a driver who was ill. From there, it crept beyond the work-release camp and wafted over to the general prison population. The pandemic had reached this impenetrable fortress; a tiny virus with no proper consideration of human incarceration rules. It had failed to stop at the gatehouse.
Traditionally, due to the nature of prisons and the nature of convicts, infectious illnesses do have a presence in prison systems. SARS-CoV 2 is no exception. As the alarms within the prison rose from orange to red, and new hotspots named, the direness increased.
Then, the ebb and flow of prison life ceased and came to a complete halt.
Similarly, in the free world, those who had no convictions or felonies became imprisoned in their homes. When once, a workday end meant freedom as we left the gatehouse behind, now it only meant further seclusion. Prison had crept outside the gatehouse. We left one boiling pot only to enter into another.”
Edna Wong McKinstry is an internal medicine physician.
She shares her story and discusses her KevinMD article, “How to find joy in prison.”
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Hosted by Kevin Pho, MD, The Podcast by KevinMD shares the stories of the many who intersect with our health care system but are rarely heard from.