Mesa County has approved a plan to spend up to $1.5 million dollars on healthcare for inmates next year.
Commissioners approved the contract with Correctional Healthcare Management at their meeting Monday morning after a bidding process.
The Mesa County Sheriff's Office says it's required by law to give basic healthcare to people in jail.
"We have to provide medical. We have to provide a lot of different things and you can't just incarcerate somebody and not treat them while they're in jail," Captain Steve Farlow told 11 News on Monday.
The sheriff's office says the plan was $26,000 more in 2009 because of rising costs.
It says it does charge inmates fees to see a doctor or dentist and gets about $14,000 back every year.