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Just like insurance companies and public health programs, prisons worry that health services might be over-used if the people they serve don’t have skin in the game.  

A study by the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University finds that 38 states charge prisoners certain fees for medical services. The introduction of fees is an attempt to rein in the growing cost of prison health care on public coffers. A recent study by Pew Charitable Trusts estimated the annual cost of medical services in U.S. prisons to be $7.7 billion.  

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