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Virus in jail | Sources of COVID-19 infections in Maa City Jail being looked into

THE regional office of the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP) has sought the help of the regional office of the Department of Health (DOH) to trace how COVID-19 was transmitted after eight inmates and five personnel were found to be infected with the virus in the City Jail in Maa.

Jail Inspector Edo Lobenia, spokesperson of the BJMP regional office, said there is a need to determine how the virus was able to infect the personnel and the inmates, so that more stringent measures could be undertaken by the jail facility.

“We will continue to observe stringent health protocols to ensure that no one will again be infected,” he said.

Lobenia said they have implemented safety measures since March, when the city imposed the Enhanced Community Quarantine, to safeguard the inmates and personnel from COVID-19 infection as practicing social distancing, a crucial health protocol, is very difficult.

He said contact tracing inside the facility has started for those who are suspected to have been in contact with a COVID-19 positive person.

Of the 76 inmates who underwent swab testing, eight were found positive. There were 32 jail personnel who were also tested and five of them were found positive of the virus.

Lobenia said the 13, all asymptomatic, were immediately placed in isolation.

He added that the agency is still waiting for the results of the tests on 75 other inmates and 18 personnel.

Last month, the Toril Police Station also reported that about 30 of its detainees and personnel were infected with the virus.

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