PRESS RELEASE: First Positive COVID-19 Test for Incarcerated Individual within Washington State Correctional Facility
Released April 5, 2020
Department of Corrections
Entrance to the Monroe Correctional Complex (Photo Courtesy of DOC Communications)
TUMWATER – The Washington State Department of Corrections has received confirmation that an incarcerated man housed within a Washington state correctional facility has tested positive for COVID-19. The confirmation represents the first positive COVID-19 test for an incarcerated individual who was actively housed within a Washington state correctional facility.
The incarcerated man was housed at the Monroe Correctional Complex-Minimum Security Unit. Earlier today, based on presented symptoms, the man was taken to a local community hospital center for examination and rapid COVID-19 testing, which came back positive. Following established protocol, the man was transferred back to the Monroe Correctional Complex and placed in an isolation unit in a single person cell, where he will begin appropriate treatment for COVID-19.
The housing unit where the individual was previously housed was placed on quarantine with no movements in or out of the unit. There are approximately 119 in the housing unit where the individual was previously housed. There are a total of 420 individuals in the Minimum Security Unit. All Minimum Security Unit staff have been directed to mandatorily wear issued N95 respirators.
The facility medical director, in consultation with the Department’s chief medical officer and infectious control physician, have begun the staff and incarcerated contact mapping process and are following established protocols. A health care team will immediately complete a symptom and temperature check of all incarcerated individuals in the housing unit where the individual was previously housed.
On March 27, 2020, one incarcerated individual from the Monroe Correctional Complex, who was housed in a community medical center, contracted COVID-19 while housed outside the Monroe Correctional Complex and has remained in the community medical center since that time.