Watson provides update on COVID-19 situation at the jail

Press release from Alachua County Sheriff’s Office

Sheriff Clovis Watson, Jr. would like to provide an update regarding COVID-19 at the Department of the Jail and the steps being taken to mitigate the situation. Since the pandemic began, 196 cumulative inmates have tested positive for the Coronavirus, with the first case being confirmed on July 4, 2020. As of 9 a.m. on Wednesday, April 28th, there were 28 quarantined inmates who have tested positive for COVID-19. Today’s population at the jail is 731. The following protocol is currently in place within the jail:

  •  Preventative measures, where possible, such as social distancing, hand washing stations, masks, PPE (Personal Protective Equipment), and temperature checks continue for inmates, employees, and visitors.
  •  Tests are available for any inmate exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19 and inmates housed within the quarantined area.
  •  Inmates testing positive for the virus are being isolated in a separate area of the jail.
  •  Areas within the jail from which an inmate has tested positive are quarantined for 14 days each time a new positive test is received.
  •  Vaccine fact sheets are being distributed by Corizon Correctional Healthcare to educate all inmates. Inmates are then required to sign a consent form prior to being vaccinated.

To date, 83 inmates have received one dose, and 8 are fully vaccinated after receiving a second shot. Today, 67 inmates received their first vaccination. Currently, 384 inmates have declined the vaccine out of 451 inmates to which the vaccine has been offered. Corizon Correctional Healthcare anticipates the vaccine will have been offered to the entire inmate population by May 3, 2021.

We will continue to work with our health partners to be able to offer inmates who wish to be vaccinated that opportunity. Due to the high turnover rate of inmates within the facility we will also continue to monitor the situation, applying best practices and providing updates as the situation warrants.