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COVID-19 Outbreak at Larned Prison

Lauren FitzgeraldAugust 13, 2020

Kansas Department of Corrections (KDOC) Secretary Jeff Zmuda announced today that 43 residents at the Larned Correctional Mental Health Facility (LCMHF) have tested positive for COVID-19.

The first staff member at LCMHF tested positive on August 8 and 262 residents were tested based on the contact tracing that occurred.

The residents at LCMHF are all males, ranging in age from above the age of 20 to above the age of 60. In order to protect their identities, no other information will be released. Mandatory mask protocol was implemented on July 7 for both staff and residents.

The KDOC has been in consultation with officials from the Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) on next steps to address these circumstances. As a result of that consultation with KDHE, the following steps were implemented:

  • All 43 men were moved to the Lansing Correctional Facility (LCF) COVID-19 unit as per department protocol
  • Contact tracing will continue to identify what staff and residents have been in direct contact with the individuals
  • Those who tested negative will quarantine at LCMHF
  • Additional testing will take place as we continue to work to control the spread and KDOC will remain diligent in monitoring other staff and residents for symptoms

“Families are understandably anxious, and we want them to know that we will be working hard to ensure the health and safety of their loved ones,” Zmuda said. “We continue to stress with our staff and residents the importance of adhering to our mask protocols, good hand hygiene and social distancing.”

Larned Correctional Mental Health facility is a 598-bed, multi-custody programming facility. The facility consists of the Central Unit, which has the capacity to house 310 male maximum/medium-custody residents, the West Unit, with a capacity of 288 male minimum custody residents and the new Intake Isolation Unit, with a capacity of 64 residents.

For current information on COVID-19 in Kansas, and to sign up for updates, go to the KDHE COVID-19 Resource Center at kdhe.ks.gov/coronavirus. For information on the KDOC’s response to COVID-19, visit https://www.doc.ks.gov/kdoc-coronavirus-updates.

Copyright © Rocking M Media, 2020. All Rights Reserved. No part of this story may be reproduced without Rocking M Media’s express consent.



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