Pregnant Inmate Gives Birth Alone in Tennessee Jail Cell, Raising Concerns
Shocking birth of a pregnant inmate in a Tennessee jail cell after seeking medical help. Incident highlights the need for better policies. Similar past cases underscore challenges faced by pregnant inmates.
Pregnant Inmate Gives Birth Alone in Tennessee Jail
A pregnant inmate in a Tennessee jail shocked officials when she gave birth alone in her cell after seeking medical help. Both the woman and the newborn are stable and receiving hospital care. Authorities haven’t explained why she wasn’t taken to a hospital before giving birth, a departure from the usual practice for pregnant inmates giving birth, according to Penal Reform International.
According to CBS News, the woman was housed in a medical pod at the Montgomery County Jail and she notified a deputy about her medical issue. A licensed practical nurse arrived quickly, followed by a registered nurse who conducted assessments. However, the situation turned alarming when, within a little over an hour of seeking help, the woman delivered her baby in her cell. Officials immediately called for medical assistance, and both were taken to the hospital.
A Call for Change in Pregnant Inmates’ Health and Care Advocacy Gains Momentum
Similar cases in the past have highlighted the challenges faced by pregnant inmates. Instances in Denver in 2018 and Maryland in 2021 revealed the lack of proper medical attention during childbirth while in custody. This Tennessee incident sheds light on the need for consistent policies to protect the health of pregnant inmates. Advocates are emphasizing the importance of reform, especially considering that existing legislation like the First Step Act of 2018 only covers data collection for federal prisons, leaving state prisons and jails with varying standards of care.