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ODOC finds no COVID-19 cases in prisons

Eastern Oregon Correctional Institution. Photo via Wikimedia Commons.

SALEM – Tests on a small number of inmates reveal no cases of novel coronavirus in any of Oregon’s 14 state prisons. ODOC Chief Medical Officer Dr. Christopher DiGiulio said they have been preparing for weeks to battle the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We were one of the first prisons in the nation to close to visiting,” he said.

In addition to stepping up cleaning efforts, DiGiulio said they tried a new protocol for flu season.

“Anybody who presented to our clinic with upper respiratory symptoms, we’ve put them on mask precautions, so many of our ill patients have been wearing a mask,” he said.

Infirmaries are set up within the prisons to handle any outbreaks. Also, corrections officers are self-screening each day when they report for their shifts. They fill out questionnaires about travel, if they have had close contact with those who are infected, and if they have any COVID-19 symptoms.

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