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Coronavirus outbreak declared at Sarnia Jail after 4 staff members test positive

Global News / File

Lambton Public Health (LPH) has declared a coronavirus outbreak at Sarnia Jail.

In a statement issued Saturday morning, LPH said they’re investigating after four staff members at the jail tested positive for COVID-19.

Read more: London, Ont., jail poorly prepared for potential COVID-19 outbreak: inmate lawyer, employee rep

“The individuals who tested positive have been notified of their results,” said Lori Lucas, the supervisor of Health Protection for LPH.

“Testing and isolating those who have been exposed is underway, and changes have been implemented to reduce risk of transmission.”

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According to LPH, an institutional workplace outbreak is declared when “there are two or more lab-confirmed COVID-19 cases with an epidemiological link in the workplace within a 14-day period, where both/several cases could have reasonably acquired their infection in the workplace.”

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Fewer details are known at this point. LPH said they won’t be releasing further updates based on the current needs of the investigation.

This is not the first time a COVID-19 outbreak was declared at a correctional facility in Ontario. In December, a Kingston prison dealt with a major outbreak after 80 inmates and four staff members tested positive.

An outbreak was also declared at the Ottawa-Carleton Detention Centre on Oct. 24 after an inmate tested positive.

Read more: Canada begins vaccinating inmates in federal prisons with no active coronavirus cases

Global News learned earlier this month that the first 40 federal inmates to be vaccinated against COVID-19 in Canada were given their inoculations inside facilities without any active cases.

The Correctional Service of Canada began its vaccination rollout for prisons in early January. Four federal institutions were set to administer a combined 1,200 doses of Moderna’s vaccine in the incoming days, enough to inoculate 600 inmates.

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