Davis County updates first cases of COVID-19 at correctional facility

Dec 19, 2020, 3:23 PM | Updated: 3:25 pm
Davis County jail covid 19...
The Davis County Sheriffs office has reported the first cases of COVID-19 at the Davis County Correctional Facility. Photo: KSLTV Screengrab

FARMINGTON, Utah — The Davis County Sheriff’s Office reports that a rapid-test conducted on Friday concluded that an inmate at the Davis County Correctional Facility has tested positive for COVID-19.

As of Saturday afternoon, the Davis County Sheriff reports 29 positive cases in inmates, 1 positive case in an employee, 2 symptomatic inmates, and 4 exposed inmates showing no symptoms.

According to a statement, there are currently 375 people housed at the Davis County Correctional Facility. The Sheriff reports that 83 people shared extended space with the impacted inmate in what they refer to as a pod and that 35 people shared closer quarters with the inmate.

Rapid-tests were conducted on the 35 inmates in the infected inmate’s housing unit. The initial results found that 18 people tested positive for COVID-19 and that “some” of those people have symptoms.

RELATED: A COVID-19 positive Utah prison inmate has died, cause unclear

The Sheriff reports that 11 people tested negative with symptoms, and 6 tested negative with no symptoms. Those who tested positive “will be placed in isolation and those who were exposed will be placed in quarantine,” according to the statement.

“We have been steadfast in our efforts to prevent the spread of coronavirus throughout our facility,” said Sheriff Kelly V. Sparks, “taking a variety of precautions and implementing multiple procedures to reduce risk and possible exposure.”

“Given the amount of time that COVID-19 has been in the community, the fact that this is the first time for those in our care and custody to test positive demonstrates the steps we have taken are working.”

Those measures include limited entrance to the facility, requiring face masks to be worn at all times by everyone in the correctional facility, weekly rapid testing of all personnel, the temporary suspension of in-person visits with inmates at the facility, daily temperature checks of personnel and contract providers, early release of low-risk offenders, and routine testing and 14-day quarantine of any individual entering the custody of the Davis County Correctional Facility.

How To Prevent the Spread of COVID-19 Coronavirus

COVID-19 coronavirus spreads person to person, similar to the common cold and the flu. So, to prevent it from spreading:

  • Wash hands frequently and thoroughly, with soap and water, for at least 20 seconds.
  • Don’t touch your face.
  • Wear a mask to protect yourself and others per CDC recommendations.
  • Keep children and those with compromised immune systems away from someone who is coughing or sneezing (in this instance, at least six feet).
  • If there is an outbreak near you, practice social distancing (stay at home, instead of going to the movies, sports events, or other activities).
  • Get a flu shot.

Local resources

KSL Coronavirus Q&A 

Utah’s Coronavirus Information 

Utah State Board of Education

Utah Hospital Association

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Utah Coronavirus Information Line – 1-800-456-7707

National Resources

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Commonly asked questions, World Health Organization

Cases in the United States

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Davis County updates first cases of COVID-19 at correctional facility