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N4T Investigators: Family says father's healthcare delayed - KVOA | KVOA.com | Tucson, Arizona

N4T Investigators: Family says father's healthcare delayed

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Sara Fikes says her father is in pain, dying and being denied the healthcare he needs.

"They won't even tell us how he is doing,  they will just say well he is breathing, we will let you know if he dies," said Fikes.

Convicted of an aggravated DUI in 2013, Fike's father Robert Nelson is an inmate in an Arizona prison.

Fikes says the prison has been slow to provide her father with the healthcare he needs. 

Often taking days to process requests to see a doctor.

"When you apply to see like the doctors in prison how long does it take to get back to you?" Fikes asks in a recorded conversation.

"Four or more days," said Nelson in the recording.

"When he was eligible for a transplant a month ago but you know now he is not because they took so long because he is an inmate you are not allowed to have that type of care," said Fikes.

The level of healthcare inside Arizona's prison has come under increased scrutiny in recent days.

A judge fined The Department of Corrections $1.4 million and held the department's director in contempt of court for failing to make improvements  laid out in a 2014 settlement.

"The conditions that we are finding is the fact that people are not getting to see specialists in a timely manner. People with cancer or serious heart conditions," said attorney Corene Kendrick. 

Nelson has been diagnosed with liver cancer and moved into hospice care. His family says they have petitioned for clemency.

"He told them you know I just want to get out to die at home. He didn't ask to get out for a second chance or anything he just said I want to die at home," said Fikes.

News 4 Tucson Investigators reached out to the Arizona Department of Corrections about Nelson's care, a spokesman referred our questions to their healthcare provider who has not yet responded.

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