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Six inmates and three corrections employees at the Hamilton County Jail have tested positive for COVID-19 as of Thursday, according to a news release from the jail.

The employees diagnosed with COVID-19 have been sent home under isolation orders from the Hamilton County Health Department, while diagnosed inmates remain in quarantine in a separate area of the jail. The inmates are receiving medical treatment and review by Erlanger Medical Center, the release states.

Many of the inmates who received positive test results are jail kitchen workers. After their diagnoses, all evening meals were disposed of prior to being served and new inmates were assigned to prepare meals to help prevent the spread of the virus.

Last month, eight employees and six inmates tested positive for COVID-19. 

"I would like to reassure the public and those who may have family or friends incarcerated in the jail our personnel are going to great lengths to follow CDC guidelines and sanitize the facility on a consistent basis," Sheriff Jim Hammond said in the release. "While we have continued to take precautions based on CDC and local health department guidelines, we anticipated there would be more positive cases within our facility and we are prepared to treat those diagnosed with COVID-19 as we continue to move forward."

The jail is continuing to work with health department personnel and Erlanger to track all inmates and staff who may have come into contact with those diagnosed with COVID-19, according to the release.

The facility is also using personal protective equipment (PPE) and "following established medical best practices and guidelines" to stop the spread of the virus, according to HCSO Deputy Chief of Corrections Joe Fowler.

"My staff and I will continue to work diligently with Health Department officials and Erlanger personnel to ensure we are providing a safe, healthy environment for our employees and the inmates we are charged to protect," Fowler said in the release.

There are currently 372 inmates being housed at the jail, which has 505 total beds.

(READ MORE: Private jail company CoreCivic is pulling out of contract with Hamilton County)

 

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