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Sheriff to ask Fayette for increase in inmate medical budget

Healthcare costs are rising, even in jail.

With the jail population up significantly in recent years, Fayette County Sheriff Wayne Hannah is asking for more funding to pay for additional privatized healthcare staffing at the facility.

At Thursday night’s meeting of the Fayette County Commission, Hannah’s office will be asking for $31,654 to cover a 16 percent increase in the inmate population.

This change will increase the monthly cost for inmate healthcare from $52,211 to $68,039. It also will increase the number of weekly healthcare staffing hours at the facility by 22.4 percent, from 263 hours currently to 322 hours under the new deal.

In a table included with the agenda information provided to the commission, Fayette County would be paying $7.46 per inmate, per day for medical care. That compares to Henry County’s figure of $7.49, and $8.88 per inmate per day in Clayton County.

While Fulton and DeKalb Counties come in at $14 and $13 per inmate per day respectively, three more rural counties listed on that chart come in under Fayette’s new rate: Walton at $5.78, Bartow at $6.36 and Floyd at $6.61.

At times in recent years, the jail’s population has spiked to 330 and 350 inmates, well north of the 243 inmates contemplated under the medical contract, according to the staff memo provided to the commission.

The commission also will be considering the adoption of housekeeping changes to the recently-amended telecommunications tower ordinance.

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