Seven COVID-19 cases confirmed in Clark County Jail


Seven new cases of COVID-19 were confirmed in the Clark County Jail, the Clark County Sheriff’s Office reported Thursday, Nov. 12.

The cases reported were in one small housing unit in the main jail population, the sheriff’s office stated in a news release. Following the positive test of one inmate in the unit, all inmates in that unit were tested, following consultation with Clark County Public Health.

Those testing positive were transferred to the jail’s negative airflow medical housing area, the release stated.

Four staff members at the jail had tested positive for COVID-19 separately from the inmate outbreak. Those staff were being treated and would return to work following approval from their doctors.

“We have been expecting an increase in COVID-19 cases in the inmate population as cases increase in the community,” Clark County Sheriff’s Chief Corrections Deputy Ric Bishop said in the release. The county’s number of new cases per 100,000 of population in a two-week span has risen since early September, now at 171.

Clark County health officer and Public Health Director Alan Melnick said that his department and the jail were working closely together to identify cases and stop the spread of the disease.

The release noted precautions the jail is taking to prevent outbreaks, such as facial covering requirements for inmates and staff, screening procedures at intake to detect potential COVID-19 cases, separating new jail entries from the general population, housing positive cases in negative airflow cells, moving visitation to video and telephone, and moving attorney visits to areas allowing socially-distanced or non-contact visitation.

Previously, the sheriff’s office reported an inmate had tested positive for COVID-19 in April. That inmate had been housed in negative airflow cells during their entire stay at the jail, and had been released the day prior to the April 7 announcement.


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