The sign at the Kennebec County jail in Augusta is pictured in this July 7, 2020, file photo. Credit: Michael Shephard / BDN

The health services for inmates at the Kennebec County jail and the Androscoggin County jail have been abruptly suspended due to a dispute over a bill allegedly owed to the health care provider.

Correctional Health Partners pulled their services from both jails, effective Aug. 1, over approximately $350,000 that was allegedly owed to the company for additional services, the Kennebec Journal reported.

The Kennebec jail has opted into a contract with CPS Health Care, which already provides mental health services for its inmates, which will fulfill health care services for at least the next five months.

The Androscoggin jail reportedly received a notice that Correctional Health Partners would be terminating its contract, but did not receive a bill for outstanding payment. The jail has found a new health services provider, but declined to comment what company will be taking on the role.

Jail officials noted that there was not a lapse in health care provided to inmates.

Correctional Health Partners is reportedly seeking the estimated amount of $350,000 as part of an effort to provide premium pay to its nurses, but when jail officials sought documentation to justify the bill, they were reportedly presented a spreadsheet that did not contain any information on how that money had been allocated, according to the Kennebec newspaper.

The Knox County Jail, which is in its first year of a three-year contract with Correctional Health Partners, had not received any notice that its contract is being terminated as of Tuesday afternoon.

Leela Stockley

Leela Stockley is an alumna of the University of Maine. She was raised in northern Maine, and loves her cat Wesley, her puppy Percy and staying active in the Maine outdoors.