Orange County Jail reports COVID-19 outbreak

Orange County News

HILLSBOROUGH, N.C. (WNCN) – The Orange County Jail is experiencing a COVID-19 outbreak as officials said cases within detention facilities are surging.

Orange County officials said it began Thursday when an inmate said he didn’t feel well. At least a dozen inmates tested positive. That number is expected to increase as test results come back.

“He started complaining about someone who was recently arrested that was put into the general population and didn’t quarantine. And he complained about him coughing and him having symptoms,” said Neek Poole, whose boyfriend at the jail has COVID-19.

Orange County officials said no one who is COVID-19 positive at the facility has needed additional medical treatment.

Inmates who have tested positive are moved to a separate area away from the general population to help prevent the virus from spreading.

“COVID symptoms show up from 2 to 14 days. We all know that and pay attention to what scientists are telling us. So, if you quarantine someone who is recently arrested for 14 days, it’ll prevent that problem,” Poole said.

Orange County said it is working with Southern Health Partners to screen those infected with COVID-19 to see if they require further treatment.

Inmates at the Orange County jail are given the opportunity once a month to be vaccinated. The county health department offers inmates the Johnson and Johnson and Pfizer vaccines.

The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services reports outbreaks at detention facilities but updates its dashboard on Thursdays. The Orange County outbreak is not listed on the dashboard yet.

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