A 78-year-old inmate who recovered from COVID-19 in December died Wednesday after contracting the disease a second time.
The man is the 20th incarcerated person in the state to die from complications related to COVID-19. The last inmate death from COVID-19 was in January.
The 78-year-old man was brought Aug. 9 to a local hospital where he tested positive for COVID-19, state Department of Correction staff said. He was released and brought back to the infirmary at MacDougall-Walker Correctional Institution on Aug. 16, officials said. The man had “several significant underlying health issues,” the DOC said. He died Wednesday morning at the facility, officials said.
He had been serving a 40-year sentence for risk of injury to a child and sexual assault when he died, officials said. The agency is not releasing his name due to health privacy concerns.
As of Wednesday, 70 inmates had symptomatic cases of COVID-19 and were in the MacDougall-Walker infirmary. Another 24 inmates are asymptomatic and 50 staff members are our recovering from COVID-19.
The agency issued a statement on Aug. 23 warning visitors that in-person visits to the prison would be put on hold if the state’s positivity rate for COVID-19 reached 5%. The rate has fluctuated in the area of 3.5% to 3% for weeks.