Lake County Illinois jail tries to tamp down COVID outbreak among detainees, staff

coronavirus Photo credit Getty Images

(WBBM NEWSRADIO) — The Lake County jail in the northern suburbs is dealing with a coronavirus outbreak, officials said.

Over the weekend, four inmates and three correctional officers tested positive for COVID-19. By Monday, those numbers had increased to 14 inmates and seven correction officers, the Lake County Illinois Sheriff’s Office said in a news release Monday.

Extra safeguards have been imposed that include “enhanced medical screening” for inmates and staff, the temporary cancellation of inmate programs and a ban on the separation of detainees from different housing units.

Individuals who have tested positive for the virus are experiencing mild symptoms, officials said.

The current jail population is 451 inmates, the sheriff’s office said. Inmates have been given the option of getting vaccine doses, officials said.

“The Lake County Jail conducts regular Covid-19 tests on inmates, correctional employees, and correctional contractors. Over the past year, thousands Covid-19 tests have been conducted on inmates, staff, and contractors,” the sheriff’s office said.