GRANTS PASS, Ore. — The Jackson County Jail nurse accused of selling heroin to an inmate is a contract employee with the jail’s medical unit, Conmed.
Sheriff Winters is not detailing how Pierce got heroin inside the jail, but to get a better idea of how close inmates and medical staff work together, NewsWatch12 spoke with one Conmed nurse at the Josephine County Jail.
Nurse Odessa McCary said she and the other Conmed staff work closely with inmates on a daily basis. She treats inmates inside their cell through a small port and even inside her medical clinic. It’s like a doctor’s office where she can physically examine the inmate.
“They come in and we can’t assess them without seeing them in person. We have cameras right there and first time we see them, we see them in this main room,” McCary explained.
McCary said the inmate and Conmed staff are never alone in the room. There’s several security cameras around and a deputy who’s always present.
Conmed has specific procedures and rules it requires for its staff. McCary says Conmed staff are required to go through training and work with the jail to make sure their policies work with the jail’s rules.