Covid spurt from new prisoners, not old inmates: Hospital

Doctors at Epidemic Diseases Hospital say even if new prisoners test negative, they are quarantined for a week

Published: 17th April 2021 05:19 AM  |   Last Updated: 17th April 2021 05:19 AM   |  A+A-

Doctors from the Epidemic Diseases Hospital say they use the radio in prison to educate inmates on Covid appropriate behaviour

Express News Service

BENGALURU: Bengaluru’s Epidemic Diseases Hospital has treated 31 Covid positive prisoners in the past two months that it has been designated as the nodal centre for the treatment of patients from the Central Prison in Parappana Agrahara.Hospital Medical Superintendent and executive committee member of Central Prison Dr Ansar Ahmed said that there has been no outbreak in the jail and that all those who had tested positive were prisoners who had been brought in from outside.

“The inmates have been comparatively safer than people outside. We use the radio in prison to educate inmates on Covid-19 appropriate behaviour such as wearing masks. Inmates also stitch their own masks,” Dr Ahmed said.Currently, six patients from prison are being treated at the hospital. Most prisoners have been asymptomatic, while those who had symptoms had mild cough and cold.

“Covid cases of prisoners that we have seen so far have been those who were convicted by court, or parolees returning to jail, who test positive after the mandatory RT-PCR test. Those who test positive are admitted to our hospital. After recovery, they are quarantined in a separate section in prison and not allowed to mingle with other inmates for a while,” Dr Ansar said.

Even if new inmates test negative, they are still quarantined in a separate section of the prison for a week. After this, both prisoners who tested negative, and those who recovered undergo an RT-PCR test before being sent into the main barracks. The Central Prison has around  5,000 inmates. Prison authorities are now planning to begin vaccination of inmates aged above 45. There are 400 inmates aged above 45 and 91 above 60.

Immunisation will begin in two or three days. Jail authorities will coordinate with the jail hospital and government hospitals in the vicinity including Singasandra Government Hospital.During the past year, the Epidemic Diseases Hospital has treated 438 Covid-19 patients. They have 40 beds for Covid-19 patients and 60 for non-Covid patients.


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