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PLoS One ; 16(10): e0257842, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1450729


Carceral settings in the United States have been the source of many single site COVID-19 outbreaks. Quarantine is a strategy used to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 in correctional settings, and specific quarantine practices differ state to state. To better understand how states are using quarantine in prisons, we reviewed each state's definition of quarantine and compared each state's definition to the Centers for Disease Control's (CDC) definition and recommendations for quarantine in jails and prisons. Most prison systems, 45 of 53, define quarantine, but definitions vary widely. No state published definitions of quarantine that align with all CDC recommendations, and only 9 states provide quarantine data. In these states, the highest recorded quarantine rate occurred in Ohio in May 2020 at 843 per 1,000. It is necessary for prison systems to standardize their definitions of quarantine and to utilize quarantine practices in accordance with CDC recommendations. In addition, data transparency is needed to better understand the use of quarantine and its effectiveness at mitigating COVID-19 outbreaks in carceral settings.

COVID-19/epidemiology , Correctional Facilities/statistics & numerical data , Quarantine/statistics & numerical data , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/virology , COVID-19 Testing/statistics & numerical data , Humans , Quarantine/standards , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , United States/epidemiology
Am J Public Health ; 111(5): 907-916, 2021 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1177867


Objectives. To assess SARS-CoV-2 transmission within a correctional facility and recommend mitigation strategies.Methods. From April 29 to May 15, 2020, we established the point prevalence of COVID-19 among incarcerated persons and staff within a correctional facility in Arkansas. Participants provided respiratory specimens for SARS-CoV-2 testing and completed questionnaires on symptoms and factors associated with transmission.Results. Of 1647 incarcerated persons and 128 staff tested, 30.5% of incarcerated persons (range by housing unit = 0.0%-58.2%) and 2.3% of staff tested positive for SARS-CoV-2. Among those who tested positive and responded to symptom questions (431 incarcerated persons, 3 staff), 81.2% and 33.3% were asymptomatic, respectively. Most incarcerated persons (58.0%) reported wearing cloth face coverings 8 hours or less per day, and 63.3% reported close contact with someone other than their bunkmate.Conclusions. If testing remained limited to symptomatic individuals, fewer cases would have been detected or detection would have been delayed, allowing transmission to continue. Rapid implementation of mass testing and strict enforcement of infection prevention and control measures may be needed to mitigate spread of SARS-CoV-2 in this setting.

COVID-19 Testing , COVID-19 , Correctional Facilities/statistics & numerical data , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Arkansas/epidemiology , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/transmission , Housing/statistics & numerical data , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Prevalence , Prisoners/statistics & numerical data , Surveys and Questionnaires