The Department of Correctional Services, DCS, is reporting an increase in the number of COVID-19 cases among inmates and staff at the country’s correctional facilities in recent weeks.

In a media release this afternoon, the DCS said 8 inmates have tested positive for the coronavirus.

Fifteen staff members have also tested positive and are now in isolation.

Hykel Nunes reports.

The break down of active cases of COVID-19 include one inmate and five staff members from the Horizon Adult Remand Centre.

One staff member each from the South Camp Juvenile and the St. Catherine Adult Correctional Centres.

One ward and Two staff members from the Metcalfe Street Secure Juvenile Centre.

Four staff members at the Head Office

One inmate and one staff member from South Camp Adult Correctional Centre.

And five inmates and a staff member from the Tower Street Adult Correctional Centre.

Meanwhile, the Department has implemented measures aimed at reducing the spread of the virus.

The South Camp Adult Correctional Centre is currently on lock down while movement has been restricted at the Tower Street Adult Correctional Centre.

Additionally, a review of the DCS’ COVID-19 contingency plan was done and has been activated.

According to DCS, clear COVID-19 screening and sanitization procedures are in place to ensure that duties are conducted using guidelines as set out by the Government of Jamaica under the Disaster Risk Management Act (2020).

DCS continues to follow published guidelines from the World Health Organization, the Centres for Disease Control, Pan American Health Organization and the Ministry of Health and Wellness to reduce and prevent the spread of the virus.