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Press Release  Massachusetts Department of Correction Selects VitalCore Health Strategies as New Independent Health Care Partner

DOC Selects New Independent Health Care Partner to Deliver Comprehensive Patient Health Care Services for Residents Living at 10 State Correctional Facilities
For immediate release:
  • Massachusetts Department of Correction
  • Executive Office of Public Safety and Security

Media Contact   for Massachusetts Department of Correction Selects VitalCore Health Strategies as New Independent Health Care Partner

Scott J. Croteau, Acting Director of Media Relations

MilfordToday, the Massachusetts Department of Correction (DOC) announced the selection of a new independent health care partner to deliver comprehensive patient health care services for residents living at 10 state correctional facilities.  After an extensive procurement process, VitalCore Health Strategies, a national leader in correctional healthcare, was chosen for a 5-year contract with the DOC based on the organization’s demonstrated ability to provide innovative and comprehensive correctional health care with a steadfast commitment to enhancing the quality of service for incarcerated patients.  

The procurement process began in February 2023 when DOC sought the expertise of ForHealth Consulting at UMass Chan Medical School to develop a Request for Proposal designed to meet the evolving and complex needs of DOC’s incarcerated population. In collaboration with ForHealth, DOC developed a robust RFR, released in November 2023, that included extensive demographic information about the incarcerated population to ensure bidders could develop and structure proposals tailored to fit the needs of the 10 facilities.  

A procurement review team thoroughly evaluated submissions from all bidders and determined VitalCore will offer the best value for Massachusetts taxpayers.  

“In correctional settings, the success of the rehabilitative mission relies on a system’s ability to provide quality and compassionate care. The Massachusetts Department of Correction’s new partnership with VitalCore reflects their deep commitment to delivering holistic healthcare to incarcerated individuals,” said Secretary of Public Safety and Security Terrence Reidy. “I commend the DOC and UMass Chan ForHealth team for their thoughtful approach to identifying an independent healthcare partner who can meet the complex needs of incarcerated patients and shares Massachusetts’ vision for achieving high standards of care.” 

“Recognizing the wide-ranging needs of incarcerated individuals, we selected VitalCore with confidence in their ability to deliver important services across our state correctional system,” said Interim DOC Commissioner Shawn Jenkins. “The expertise of our partners at ForHealth informed our approach to enhancing our service delivery model in ways that will improve outcomes for those entrusted to our care.”  

“We are excited to collaborate and partner with the Massachusetts Department of Correction. Our mission is to prioritize the dignity and health of all under custodial care by delivering the highest standards of quality medical and behavioral health care, guided by evidence-based and trauma-informed best practices that result in positive clinical experiences for incarcerated patients,” said Viola Riggin, CEO of VitalCore Health Strategies. “We share the same goals as the DOC to provide quality patient care, and we will demonstrate our passion for this work in our daily services.” 

As part of the five-year, $770 million agreement, VitalCore will facilitate medical, dental, mental, and behavioral health, substance use assessment, and sex offender treatment and evaluation services at 10 state correctional facilities. VitalCore will introduce new evidence-based practices and innovations to enhance the quality of care, including implementing a secure Telehealth system, an after-hours crisis hotline, and the eventual goal of an online patient portal accessible to incarcerated individuals through their DOC-issued personal tablets. The new provider will also bring renewed focus to medical staff recruitment and retention, geriatric care, and comprehensive wellness and pain management programs.   

The contract allows for two extensions with up to two years per extension.  

 VitalCore will serve the following state correctional facilities:  



Population Type 

Approximate Population Size 


Women / All Security Levels 


Boston Pre-Release Center 

Men / Minimum Security 


Pondville Correctional Center 

Men / Minimum Security 


Massachusetts Treatment Center 

Men / Medium Security 



Men / Medium Security 


Old Colony Correction Center 

Men / Medium Security 


Northeastern Correctional Center (Concord Farm) 

Men / Medium Security 


North Central Correctional Institution (Gardner) 

Men / Medium Security 



Men / Medium Security 


Souza-Baranowski Correctional Center 

Men / Maximum and Medium Security 



VitalCore replaces DOC’s previous healthcare provider, Wellpath, LLC, whose contract at the abovementioned correctional facilities ends on June 30, 2024.  

The Department maintains a separate, facility-specific contract with Wellpath Recovery Solutions for Bridgewater State Hospital (BSH). DOC anticipates the next procurement process for BSH health care services will begin early next year.  

In addition, a procurement process is now underway for a facility-specific contract for the Massachusetts Alcohol and Substance Abuse Center (MASAC) in Plymouth, with an anticipated start date of July 2024.  

About VitalCore Health Strategies 

VitalCore was founded in January 2015 as Viola Riggin LLC and rebranded as VitalCore in 2018. VitalCore Health Strategies’ focus on values and improving the quality of life for patients is redefining correctional healthcare and healthcare in other institutionalized settings. 

Based in Topeka, Kansas, VitalCore provides health and mental health services in carceral settings nationwide. VitalCore currently serves 136 facilities providing care to 80,000 incarcerated individuals in 17 states.  

VitalCore’s patient-first approach ensures safe, high-quality care aimed at optimizing outcomes and mitigating risk. VitalCore prioritizes preventive care, outcomes-based behavioral services, evidence-based practice, and medical care that treats the whole patient, recognizing that preventative medicine leads to healthier patients, fewer risks, and lower costs.  

Learn more, about VitalCore Health Strategies here.  


Media Contact   for Massachusetts Department of Correction Selects VitalCore Health Strategies as New Independent Health Care Partner

  • Massachusetts Department of Correction 

    The Department of Correction oversees the state prison system, managing inmates at 14 institutions across the state. We provide custody, care, and programming for those under our supervision to prepare them for safe and successful reentry into the community.
  • Executive Office of Public Safety and Security 

    EOPSS is responsible for the policy development and budgetary oversight of its secretariat agencies, independent programs, and several boards which aid in crime prevention, homeland security preparedness, and ensuring the safety of residents and visitors in the Commonwealth.
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