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Department of Corrections: Decatur staff member has coronavirus; Tutwiler inmate dies

Last week, the department said a staff member at the Limestone Correctional Facility in Harvest tested positive for coronavirus.

Posted: Jun 29, 2020 5:28 PM

The Alabama Department of Corrections announced Monday that an employee in Decatur has coronavirus, and an inmate who tested positive for the virus has died.

The department said the staff member at North Alabama Community Based Facility/Community Work Center in Decatur self-reported a positive coronavirus diagnosis. That person is self-quarantining.

Last week, the department said a staff member at the Limestone Correctional Facility in Harvest tested positive for coronavirus.

Also Monday, the department said Wanda Gaye Dison, a 68-year-old inmate who was serving a 55-year-sentence for rape and sodomy out of Montgomery County at Julia Tutwiler Prison for Women in Wetumpka, died Monday.

Here’s more from the department’s news release:

On June 21, Inmate Dison was transferred to a local hospital from Tutwiler’s infirmary due to her advanced, chronic medical conditions and rapidly declining health. Upon admission to the hospital, Dison was tested for COVID-19 and subsequently returned a positive test result. She remained under the care of the hospital until her unfortunate passing. Dison’s exact cause of death is pending the results of a final autopsy. The Alabama Department of Corrections (ADOC) extends its sympathies to the Dison family and her loved ones during this difficult time.

INMATE POPULATION

The ADOC has confirmed that two (2) inmates at Tutwiler have tested positive for COVID-19.

One of the inmates was asymptomatic and was tested as a precautionary measure prior to a necessary facility-to-facility transfer. The other inmate was on level-two quarantine awaiting the results of a test for COVID-19 after presenting with signs and symptoms of the disease. Upon notification of their positive test results, both inmates were moved to medical isolation. After completing our consultation with the State Medical Director of the ADOC’s contracted health services provider, the decision was made to keep the respective areas in which these inmates were housed on level-one quarantine.

Sixty-five (65) total cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed among our inmate population, forty-one (41) of which remain active.

ADOC STAFF

The ADOC was informed via self-reporting that:

two (2) staff members at Birmingham Community Based Facility/Community Work Center in Birmingham, Alabama;

one (1) staff member employed at St. Clair Correctional Facility in Springville, Alabama;

three (3) staff members employed at Holman Correctional Facility in Atmore, Alabama;

one (1) staff member employed at North Alabama Community Based Facility/Community Work Center in Decatur, Alabama; and

one (1) staff member employed at Kilby Correctional Facility in Montgomery, Alabama, have tested positive for COVID-19.

These eight (8) individuals promptly self-quarantined under the direction of their healthcare providers.

The ADOC’s Office of Health Services (OHS) has initiated investigations to determine which, if any, ADOC inmates or employees may have had direct, prolonged exposure to these staff members. Upon completing the appropriate due diligence, OHS will advise any staff with direct exposure to contact their healthcare providers and self-quarantine for the recommended 14-day period, or as advised by their health care providers.

Eighty-two (82) COVID-19 cases among ADOC staff and contracted staff remain active. Eighty-one (81) staff members who previously self-reported a positive test have been cleared by medical providers to return to work.

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