Tennessee reports major Covid-19 outbreak at prison


NASHVILLE, Tenn.  (WDEF) – The Tennessee Department of Health reports a major Covid-19 outbreak at a state prison.

They say there are 965 positive cases from the South Central Correctional Facility in Wayne County in southwest Tennessee.

- Advertisement -

The medical director for the Department of Corrections ordered mass testing at the facility in Clifton after several inmates and staff began showing symptoms.

The second round of testing included 1410 people.

Roughly two thirds of them have tested positive with 168 test results still pending.

The prison is operated by CoreCivic, which is also exiting their management of the Silverdale Correctional Facility now in Hamilton County.

“All inmates who test positive for COVID-19 and are asymptomatic receive daily medical monitoring and health assessments.  Those who may become symptomatic but don’t require additional care, such as respiratory support, will be treated in place or at local hospitals, depending on their needs.  Staff will self-quarantine and are monitored for symptoms and encouraged to contact their healthcare provider.”

This is the largest prison outbreak so far in Tennessee, much larger than the Bledsoe Correctional outbreak earlier this year.

Prision Covid-19 cases have reacted differently than in the general population.

There have been a handful of deaths of older prisoners and the cases spread quicker than in the public.

But the rate of actually getting sick has been much lower from the prison cases than in the general public.

The South Central Correctional Facility outbreak accounts for more than half of the 1,818 new total cases reported on Monday in Tennessee.

That accounts for the big jump on Monday.

But the Department of Health reports they have had other issues.

“there has been a disruption in laboratory reporting since Friday that will result in a higher caseload over the next few days.”