DCS reports increase in COVID-19 cases at correctional institutionsFriday, September 17, 2021
KINGSTON, Jamaica— The Department of Correctional Services (DCS) is reporting an increase in the number of COVID-19 cases among the inmate/ward population and staff members in its correctional institutions in recent weeks.
According to a statement from DCS, there are currently 58 inmates/wards who have tested positive for the virus while seven have been hospitalised.
Additionally, 38 staff members have tested positive and are now in isolation.
DCS said data from its Medical Services Unit has indicated that since the onset of the pandemic in March 2020, 206 inmates/wards and 228 staff members have recovered from the virus.
The death count remains at five: two inmates and three officers from the first wave of the virus.
''Jamaica remains one of the countries with the least amount of cases in its correctional system within the jurisdiction,'' the DCS said.
Meanwhile, the agency said it will be implementing additional COVID-19 measures to reduce and prevent the spread of the virus.
Beginning Saturday, September 18, 2021, the Tower Street Adult Correctional Centre in the first instance, will observe no movement initially for seven days and cloth masks will be prohibited.
Surgical masks will be distributed to inmates and officers. The rotation of Officers will also be suspended. They will retain their assigned posts for the period to prevent the spread of the virus.
The DCS said it will also continue to enforce measures previously implemented including temperature checks for all individuals entering the institutions, handwashing and sanitisation stations along with the provision of thermometers and sanitising agents at all institutions.
The DCS in collaboration with the Public Health Department continues swabbing exercises within the institutions.
Meanwhile, DCS said that to date, approximately 300 inmates from the adult correctional institutions and more than 300 staff members have been inoculated.