(Posted Aug. 13, 2020)
Mass testing for COVID-19 was conducted at Madison Correctional Institution (MACI) this week which led to an increase in reported positive cases. As of Aug. 12, testing conducted on Aug. 10 has resulted in a total of 114 new cases of COVID-19 among inmates at MACI.
MACI works closely with the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction (ODRC) to follow state health protocols. MACI also has its own medical staff to care for inmates.
Madison County Public Health is monitoring the situation closely and is working with prison staff to limit the spread of COVID-19. When a prison outbreak occurs, there is a concern for community spread as prison employees go home to their families.
“I want to thank all of the staff at our two corrections facilities here in Madison County for their dedication,” said Health Commissioner Chris Cook. “When I see an outbreak in a prison, I’m deeply concerned for both the staff and the prisoners. We know how quickly this virus can move through congregate settings and the damage it can do in our community, as well.”
ODRC has implemented several safeguards for inmates, including increasing the availability of hygiene and sanitization products, offering cloth face coverings, and preventing intermingling between inmate cohorts. Mass testing has been conducted at most prisons across the state. ODRC plans to continue to test inmates who are symptomatic in all state prison facilities.
Madison County Public Health encourages all residents to be vigilant. Anyone who is sick should stay home except to receive healthcare, Cook said.
COVID-19 testing continues to be available in Madison County from Madison Health and Rocking Horse Community Health Center.
The health department investigates every case of COVID-19 in the county.