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Sask. Pen reports death of inmate due to COVID-19

Sask. Pen reports death of inmate due to COVID-19
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An inmate at Saskatchewan Penitentiary has died “as an apparent result” of complications related to COVID-19, the prison reported Saturday.

According to a release, the inmate died at an outside hospital Friday and his next of kin have been notified.

This is the first death of inmate with a COVID-19 diagnosis at a federal correctional facility in the province and the fourth in Canada.

Family and inmate advocates have voiced concerns about a COVID-19 outbreak declared at the Prince Albert-area federal prison on Dec. 12.

According to the Correctional Service of Canada (CSC), which manages federal correctional facilities, cases jumped from 24 inmates and no staff on Dec. 14 to 64 inmates and one staff within a week.

As of Jan. 7, there were 69 active cases at the prison.

Inmates transferring to the Saskatchewan Penitentiary are screened for COVID-19, medically isolated for 14 days with the support of medical and unit staff and housed in a separate unit during their isolation.

The CSC says it’s equipped to conduct its own testing, including rapid tests, which are then lab-confirmed. Testing is being offered to all staff and inmates.

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