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Interrupted LifeExperiences of Incarcerated Women in the United States$
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Rickie Solinger and Rebecca Sharitz

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780520252493

Published to California Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520252493.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CALIFORNIA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.california.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of California Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CALSO for personal use.date: 06 July 2022

The Death of Luisa Montalvo

The Death of Luisa Montalvo

(p.246) 47 The Death of Luisa Montalvo
Interrupted Life

Nancy Stoller

University of California Press

In prisons, access to health care requires that prisoners move from their residential units to clinics or other sites of care where they can see a nurse or a physician. The prisoner's movement through the geographical space of the prison is intensively controlled by custody policies, routines, economies, and spur-of-the-moment decisions. These policies and practices, primarily determined by custodial priorities, can create significant delays, roadblocks, and detours on the routes to care. In their accounts, incarcerated women who sought health care repeatedly reported lost laboratory results and the need to wait days for urgent prescriptions or months for important appointments. Several were forced to take improperly labeled medication intended for other patients. Many never had the tests or appointments that were ordered. The case of Luisa Montalvo, a woman prisoner with HIV, demonstrates the magnitude of the difficulty of locating and receiving the benefits of health services in a prison. Her story captures the most hideous consequence of terrible health care in prison: death.

Keywords:   Luisa Montalvo, health care, death, HIV, incarcerated women, prisons, custody policies, laboratory results

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