From 2004-2010, the author directed the Massachusetts Health Passport Project (MHPP), aimed at facilitating continuous access to healthcare for girls and boys in the juvenile justice system in two Massachusetts counties. This article describes the health challenges facing youth, and particularly girls in the juvenile justice system including the significant barriers to health care access that these youth face. It goes on to describe the Massachusetts Health Passport Project, designed to: 1. Improve access to healthcare; 2) Change relevant systems; 3) Improve youth’s social supports; and 4) Improve youth’s health status. The article draws on an evaluation of MHPP to describe the process of its development, its successes, and its challenges and concludes with a specific call for greater health care coordination for youth in the juvenile justice system.
This Article was reprinted in Women and Girls in the Criminal Justice System, Vol. 2: Policy Issues and Practice Strategies, edited by R. Immarigeon, Kingston, NJ: Civic Research Institute, Inc., 2006.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/francine_sherman/8/