Covid-19 exacerbates danger in prisons and prisons


Monday, Mo. Korchinsky was taken out of prison to pick up the woman. Korchinsky is the project administrator for the Gates Peer Health Mentoring Program, which provides support during the first 72 hours of the release of former detainees. Korchinsky missed the trip. The woman he collected was unable to leave custody. Due to the additional security measures imposed by Covid-19's global disease, he has to wait another 14 days before he can be sent to prison for further treatment if he is exposed to a virus. Imprisonment. "It's hard to find time in jail anywhere," Korchinsky says. "Now with Covid-19, it's more difficult." The woman will have to wait and hope she does not get sick.

While the longing for freedom is depressing, the idea of ​​falling into prison with the virus is even worse. "There is a lot of fear in the prisoners I work with," Korchinski says. In New Jersey, ICE detainees have gone on a hunger strike and demanded release, rather than exacerbating the viral disease they see as inevitable. In Italy and Colombia, these fears became violent and led to riots that killed dozens. It is not just detainees who have started thinking about the enormous risk that Covid-19 poses to the world's imprisoned population who, for example, are unable to cope with many illnesses due to factors that keep them in close quarters. Preventive measures other people now have in practice. Many advocates and health professionals are demanding massive relief to avoid potentially lethal disease that may have already started.

After weeks of anxious waiting, she now brings news of new cases of coronavirus, correction officers and inmates every day: Los Angeles, San Francisco, Lesbian, Georgia, Waupun, Wisconsin, Oakdale, Louisiana. In most states, the numbers are low in single digits, but in New York, especially on Rickers Island, the numbers are starting to climb. At least 38 people involved with the New York adjustment system have tested positive for Covid-19. (Convicted Rep. Harvey Weinstein is currently in custody at the Wendy's Correctional Facility in Western New York, but the offended Hollywood tycoon appears to have tested positive. He was earlier at Rikers.) President Trump was asked about nonviolent federalism at a press conference Sunday. Those who are at high risk of developing high symptoms if they contract Covid-19. “We've been told about it and we're looking at it. That's a bit of a problem. "Trump replied. “But when we talk about total nonviolence, we are talking about nonviolent prisoners. Yes, we really do. ”

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There is widespread concern about the spread of coronavirus inside prisons. Cold-19 is dangerous in any area, but the disease is likely to be particularly devastating among detained populations for whom social distancing is impossible. “Prisons are crowded. In California, they are over 130 percent of the capacity, ”said Liz Bucken, head of the criminal justice project at ACLU in Northern California. Some inmates have two cells, many of them in open hostels. "They sleep and live very close together, sharing toilets, mediocre," says Bucken. "This is very unpaid." Many prisons are short-lived soap, and if they have it, it's not free at all. In many establishments, hand sanitizing is counterintuitive because of the high alcohol content.

The constant influx of new people into prisons, and especially prisons, makes it difficult for condoms. According to Daniel Lopez Aquana, a public health practitioner led by the World Health Organization to help manage the cold-19 disease outbreak, the new arrivals are a frequent vector of prison spreads. During the 1918 influenza pandemic, one new inmate accelerated the mass upheaval at San Quentin Prison, California. "New people who come in every day tend to have low socioeconomic status," said Matthew Murphy, who studies the risk of infectious diseases in criminal justice, which is included in the Brown University population. "Their imprisonment may be first when they interact with the health care system." Even if the disease is not transmitted to a newly born person, the prison staff's inclinations and susceptibility are subject to a similar risk of exposure.

In addition to widespread lightness, the incarcerated population also includes a large number of high-risk adults, due to the lengthy sentences that are prevalent in the U.S. justice system. People in prison are also more likely to start with poor health. Prisoners experience higher rates of HIV, TB, cardiopulmonary and immunocompromised development than the average. "People don't want medical care," says Bucken. "If you have seasonal flu, it will bring you to shame." This may be a good medical practice, but it should feel a lot like punishment for illness.

Cautious inmates are far from the only problem in the prison health care system. It will struggle with the same deficits and complex triary decisions that every medical center has to deal with or prepare for. Mental health services, especially those provided by external resources, are likely to be victims. Sick inmates may also not have access to a medical system that is equipped or staffed to meet their needs, especially in the event of a pandemic. "Prisoners in general do not have life-support facilities," said Brie Williams, director of the Criminal Justice and Health Program in San Francisco. "They can only provide respiratory care to a limited number of people," Williams added. In California, most jails are subject to medical treatment, which means that the federal government has found that they cannot provide proper medical care for prisoners and is subject to supervision. "The medical staff is extremely stressful," says Bucken. "They are not equipped for the normal flu season." Not all prisons will have such tense health care, but some are already very many.

Illustrated woman, speech bubble, virus cell

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Some prison systems are already taking measures to reduce Covid-19 disease until their health care systems are in place. "We are working on our communicable disease protocol," said Jeremy Dessell, communications director for the Texas Department of Criminal Justice. "Before they walk into the unit, everyone fills in the questionnaire and the temperature will be checked in the back door." If a person has a temperature of 100.4 or higher, they will be put on a mask and gloves while medically isolated in the hospital for further testing. The Texas system is typical of nationwide screening efforts. All states suspended normal visits, and 15 banned legal visits to further reduce the chances of the virus being affected.

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