According to the COVID-19 behind-the-scenes data project of the University of California, Los Angeles Law School and Johns Hopkins.
According to the review of available data by state and federal prisons, after adjusting for age, people who are infected while in prison are more than three times more likely to die of coronavirus than people who are outside.
The head of the project, Professor Sharon Dolovic, told ABC News: “The gap is surprising to us.” “I think we know that we need to find disproportionate numbers, but we are all so aware of this difference. Big surprise.”
Dolovic said she thinks this difference may be more serious because many prison facilities still only conduct COVID-1
Dolovic said: “If you only examine people with obvious symptoms, you will miss all asymptomatic people.”
As the virus epidemic re-emerged in nearly two states, many new discoveries were proposed, and many people were forced to retake preventive measures to prevent further spread. But in thousands of prisons and prisons across the country with coronaviruses, prisoners and corrections officers find it much more difficult to implement social alienation and other preventive measures.
Some of the most serious viral hot spots in the country have been in prisons and prisons. According to data compiled by the New York Times, more than 2,400 inmates at the Marion Correctional Institution in Ohio tested positive. Times data show that 1,587 positive cases have been seen in the San Quentin state prison in California, and 1390 cases of the disease have been reported in the Harris County prison in Houston, Texas.
A spokesman for the Bureau of Prisons said that the Bureau has not reviewed new research. But the spokesman said that as more and more resources are available, prisoners are being examined and protocols have been developed to isolate those who test positive and treat those who show symptoms. The spokesman added that its prisons followed the guidelines of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, noting: “Although the prison environment is unique in response to a pandemic, the care and treatment of confirmed COVID-19 positive cases is not.”
According to the Bureau of Prisons, the initial strategy to combat viruses in prisons included suspending the movement of prisoners from one facility to another within the federal prison system, and modifying actions to maximize social distance. Both federal and state agencies have developed targeted measures to release prisoners to reduce the population-albeit to varying degrees.
According to an internal memo obtained by ABC News, the Bureau of Prisons expanded the seventh phase of the so-called COVID-19 plan. The memo said that after removing the quarantine site, the intake of prisoners returned to normal. The BOP now says that each institution should designate specific quarantine areas and quarantine areas, hold prisoners for 14 days, and then test them.
BOP also began to restore the ability to move prisoners between short distances. They said the prisoners would be quarantined for 14 days before and after moving and tested in each facility. These policies will continue until July 31. A Balance of Payments spokesperson did not immediately respond to ABC News’ request for comment on this report.
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The Nonprofit Prison Policy Initiative, which advocates against large-scale convictions, analyzed the epidemic response of local and state prisons and found that prisons have reduced the average population by 30%, while state prisons have decreased by an average of 5%. Some prisoner advocates have promoted this approach, saying that reducing the number of prisoners will not only help ensure the safety of prisoners and staff, but is also essential to protecting the entire community.
“We have corrections officers, health workers and other personnel entering and exiting these facilities every day,” said Sarah Gersten, Executive Director and General Counsel of the Last Prisoner Project. “There is a risk that they will later spread the virus to their communities and overwhelm the already overwhelmed medical system.”
Gersten said that the released prisoners would not be under the same threat because they were strictly isolated and screened before going out.
The Last Prisoner Project is a non-profit organization whose mission is to reform cannabis-related laws and advocate for the release of people imprisoned for cannabis-related charges. Gersten said that with the onset of the coronavirus, the group has expanded its focus.
She told ABC News: “We have expanded our plan to capture people who may be particularly likely to die because of COVID.”
Despite the increasing number of coronavirus cases in prisons, legal advocates told ABC News that the number of prisoners released to stop the spread did not seem to increase. Gersten and her team have been advocating the early release of prisoners, such as Michael Thompson, a prisoner at the Muskegon correctional facility in Michigan.
The doctor diagnosed 69-year-old Thompson with type 2 diabetes, making him a high-risk group of the virus. He was imprisoned in 1996 and sentenced to more than half of 42 to 60 years’ imprisonment for three counts of cannabis sales and two counts of illegal possession of firearms. He was only 45 years old when he was arrested.
Thompson told ABC News in a telephone interview that he was worried about getting the virus day and night.
He said: “I’m afraid you can’t fight back.”
The Michigan Department of Corrections provided prisoners with masks, but Thompson said he thought they were vulnerable, so he and other inmates became very creative.
He said, “I made my mask out of shorts.” “A man who sews very well here. I made some new shorts for him, and he made them for me.”
A spokesperson for the Michigan State Department of Corrections said that the masks originally provided to prisoners were made with excess prisoner clothing, but since then, the department has begun using custom-made cotton materials.
The virus changed the life inside the prison wall. Prisoners have less freedom and less contact with relatives from outside.
He said: “This is a lot of controlled sports.” “No one can visit, only one unit can be placed in a yard at a time.”
The latest information from the Michigan Department of Corrections shows that nearly 1,300 prisoners at Muskegon Correctional Facility were tested by COVID-19. The state said 1,282 tests were negative, none were positive, and there are 9 pending results. Michigan has not released information about individual facilities, but UCLA data shows that nearly 2,000 of Michigan’s 38,000 prisoners have been released since the pandemic began.
Professor Dolovic said she hopes the work of her team will help increase the release rate nationwide.
She said: “The people inside are scared, and people who are sick often do not get good medical care.” “I hope that with the publication of our findings, I will refocus on what I think is the most urgent crisis facing the country right now. One.”
A spokesman for the Michigan Department of Corrections said the prisoners there received adequate medical care. Chris Gautz told ABC News: “We have an obligation and obligation to take care of all the prisoners the court gave us.” “We spend a lot of time and energy, and spend money and energy to provide medical services for prisoners.”
But Thompson said he is not sure if he can survive the virus if he is infected with the virus.
“It’s not good. Prison doesn’t work like that,” he said with a smile. “You know, in terms of trying to save the people. Letting you die is cheaper.”
Luke Barr of ABC News contributed to this report. The report has been updated.
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