virus

CHILLICOTHE and CAMERON — Chillicothe Correctional Center has suspended visitation until further notice, due to seven recent positive cases of COVID-19 among staff and inmates.

Among the cases, three are staff members and four are inmates, according to Missouri Department of Corrections Communications Director Karen Pojmann.

Mass testing was conducted in June, she says, in which everyone who was tested netted a negative result at that time. The facility allowed limited visitations in late June after a three-month absence. Visits were suspended following a report of a positive case on July 1.

Staff members who have been in contact with persons who tested positive for the coronavirus were sent home to quarantine, Pojmann says. They must have two negative test results to return to work.

Offenders who test positive are placed in an isolation unit until they test negative twice.

Pojmann also confirms two positive cases — one inmate and one staff member — of COVID-19 at Western Missouri Correctional Center in Cameron. Mass testing is still being conducted there, according to the spokesperson, and visitations are suspended.

Nearly all of the positive results at both facilities involve asymptomatic individuals, she says.