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Jail doctor to continue providing medical services

WARREN — Trumbull County commissioners on Wednesday entered into a three-year contract with Dr. Phillip Malvasi to continue providing medical services and staff at the Trumbull County Jail.

The contract begins Dec. 1 and pays out $372,204 for the first two years and $389,029 in the third year, ending Nov. 30, 2021. The money pays both Malvasi and the staff he hires to assist in the facility.

Commissioners requested proposals for the contract in July, but received no other bids.

Malvasi has run the inmate medical program since 2000. In 2012, his contract was adjusted to $304,000 per year. The contract was renewed on a month-to-month basis at the same rate until July, when it was adjusted with a $48,000 annual increase, bringing the annual rate to $352,125.

Trumbull County Sheriff Paul Monroe wanted a longer-term contract in place, according to commissioners.

The increase in budget is a reflection of an increase in the jail population and an increased demand for medical services, the jail administrator said in July.

“We have to meet the Ohio jail standards, and part of that is a medical evaluation. With us above capacity, it is taxing (Malvasi’s) employees. We need more to handle the workload,” said Maj. Dan Mason of the Trumbull County Sheriff’s Office.

The jail was initially built with 286 beds, but some are out of commission. Some inmates sleep in “boats,” which are portable, mattress-like cushions on the floor. There were 340 inmates in the jail at 5:20 p.m. Wednesday, according to jail records.

Commissioners in May considered a contract of $372,204 a year for Malvasi, but removed it from the agenda. At the time, Malvasi was pursuing an appointment to the position of Trumbull County coroner, which was filled by members of the Trumbull County Democratic Party.

The party selected then-deputy coroner Dr. Thomas James to take over the coroner position, which was left vacant in April when Dr. Humphrey Germaniuk died.

rfox@tribtoday.com

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