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Thursday, April 23, 2020

Daytona Beach facility leads Florida's growing rate of prison coronavirus cases

Posted By on Thu, Apr 23, 2020 at 11:40 AM

click to enlarge Tomoka Correctional Institution near Daytona Beach - IMAGE VIA GOOGLE MAPS
  • Image via Google Maps
  • Tomoka Correctional Institution near Daytona Beach
Corrections officials said Wednesday that 136 inmates and 102 corrections workers have tested positive for COVID-19, an increase of 17 cases from a Tuesday report.

The highly contagious novel coronavirus has caused four inmate deaths and has been detected in 56 prisons and four probation offices across the state, according to the Department of Corrections. The majority of inmates who have tested positive for COVID-19 are in three prisons: Blackwater River Correctional Facility in Milton, Tomoka Correctional Institution in Daytona Beach and Sumter Correctional Institution in Bushnell.

At the Daytona Beach facility, 47 inmates and seven prison workers tested positive for the virus as of Wednesday, officials said. Sumter Correctional Institution had 42 inmates, a jump from 31 cases a day before, and four employees who tested positive for COVID-19.
Four inmates at the Blackwater prison in Santa Rosa County have died from complications of COVID-19, the respiratory illness caused by the novel coronavirus. The Milton prison, which is operated by The Geo Group Inc., had 43 inmates and 10 workers who tested positive for the virus as of Wednesday, corrections officials said.

Across the state, 4,258 inmates have been placed in medical isolation or medical quarantine after being exposed to the virus. The vast majority of the inmates who have been exposed – 4,186 cases – were in medical quarantine, a practice used to separate people who came into close contact with others who tested positive for the virus or who were symptomatic, corrections officials said. According to Wednesday’s corrections department report, 387 Florida prisoners have been tested for the virus, with 18 percent of test results pending. Agency officials have not disclosed how many employees have undergone testing. Florida's prison system, the third largest in the nation, has roughly 94,000 inmates, 23,000 workers and 145 facilities.

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