An inmate at the Hamilton Aged & Infirmed facility has tested positive for COVID-19, becoming the 8th Alabama inmate to have tested positive for the virus, and a staff member at Holman Correctional Facility has also tested positive for the virus.
The man, who has preexisting medical conditions, was taken to a local hospital after exhibiting COVID-19 symptoms, where he later tested positive, the Alabama Department of Corrections said Wednesday in a press release.
“He remains under the care of the local hospital. Upon discharge, the inmate will be transferred to Limestone Correctional Facility and placed in a negative airflow room in medical isolation until he recovers and is cleared by a healthcare provider,” ADOC spokeswoman Samantha Rose said in the release.
The dorm in Hamilton Aged & Infirmed where the man was housed has been placed on a level two quarantine, which means inmates will be restricted to the dorm unless “movement absolutely is necessary and appropriate personal protective equipment is utilized,” ADOC said in the release.
The remaining areas inside Hamilton Aged & Infirmed has been placed on level one quarantine, meaning inmates will be monitored for symptoms of the virus, and have their temperatures checked twice daily.
Hamilton Aged & Infirmed houses the state’s most vulnerable inmates to COVID-19, older inmates who have medical conditions and who, if they contract the virus, are much more likely to suffer serious complications or death.
In January, Hamilton Aged & Infirmed was at 404 percent capacity, with 101 inmates in a building designed for 25, according to ADOC’s monthly statistical report.
The ADOC employee who tested positive for COCID-19 and self-reported the results to the department is on self-quarantine, ADOC said in the statement.
“The ADOC’s Office of Health Services (OHS) immediately initiated an investigation to determine which, if any, ADOC inmates or employees may have had direct, prolonged exposure to this staff member. Upon completing the appropriate follow-up interviews and due diligence, OHS will advise any exposed staff members to contact their healthcare providers and self-quarantine for the recommended 14-day period, or as advised by their healthcare provider,” the statement reads.
The confirmed case at Holman is the 17th case among ADOC staff. Five of those workers have since been cleared by doctors to return to work, according to ADOC.