The ACLU of Illinois is challenging the system for providing medical and dental care to persons in Illinois prisons. The State’s prison healthcare is grossly underfunded, badly managed, and deeply dysfunctional, resulting in needless, painful delays in treatment, mismanagement of common chronic conditions, and preventable deaths.

Starting in 2014, independent correctional healthcare experts conducted two separate, exhaustive evaluations of the medical and dental services available in Illinois prisons as a result of our lawsuit. The first report, released in May of 2015, described profound, systemic failures in the healthcare system of Illinois prisons causing needless suffering and preventable death. The follow up report in 2018 found that the system had not improved, and also pointed to a high number of preventable deaths. 

In December 2018, the State of Illinois agreed to a consent decree that requires broad changes to the system as well as a court-approved monitor to oversee these changes.   


Camille Bennett (ACLU of Illinois), Alan Mills (Uptown People's Law Center), Harold Hirshman (Dentons)

Date filed

May 30, 2013


U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois


Judge Jorge Alonso



Case number

10 C 4603