Most Bledsoe prisoners who tested positive for coronavirus have no symptoms, state says

Staff photo by Tim Barber/Chattanooga Times Free Press - Dec 4, 2012 - The Corrections Emergency Response Team stands at ease Monday outside the $208 million Bledsoe County Correctional Complex. Inmates will begin occupying the complex in January 2013.

The Tennessee Department of Correction says inmates at the Bledsoe County Correctional Complex west of Pikeville, Tennessee, are recovering from COVID-19 with 580 of the 586 cases confirmed on April 18 completing 14 days of isolation and showing no symptoms.

Of the six remaining positive cases at the facility, two are hospitalized while four are asymptomatic but will remain in isolation, TDOC officials said in a statement issued Thursday. Bledsoe's confirmed case numbers rose to 583 last week as results from mass testing came in.

"While there are a lot of things we still don't know about COVID-19, our facilities are doing everything possible to limit exposure and keep staff and inmates safe and healthy," Commissioner Tony Parker said in the statement.

A Bledsoe prison inmate family member contacted the Times Free Press this week with concerns about the lifting of a lockdown on inmates during the outbreak and lack of social distancing among prisoners.

TDOC