Big Sky Roundup

MT DOC reports 99 new COVID-19 cases in MT prisons since late December

By: - January 12, 2022 5:07 pm

Montana Department of Corrections

Since December 28, 99 new COVID-19 cases have been reported in Montana prisons, with 52 incarcerated people and 47 staff becoming infected with the virus.

The Montana State Prison in Deer Lodge experienced the bulk of infections, with 24 incarcerated individuals and 22 staff testing positive. At the Montana Women’s Prison in Billings, eight inmates were infected and two staff.

As of January 6, 1,062 people incarcerated in Montana’s prisons have tested positive for COVID-19, along with 319 staff. According to DOC data, six people, all inmates, have died from the infection.

Vaccination rates in Montana prisons as of December 27 have remained around 60%, while statewide, the rate has hovered around 50% since last fall. Booster shots for incarcerated people in Montana prisons became available on December 28.

The 99 newly reported cases come as health officials warn about the spread of the highly transmissible omicron variant making its way to Montana. On Wednesday, the state reported 1,831 new cases and 172 active hospitalizations.

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