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Arizona Department Of Health Services Announces Increased COVID-19 Testing In State Prisons

At a press conference Tuesday, Arizona Department of Health Services Director Dr. Cara Christ announced the state would increase the testing of correctional officers and inmates for COVID-19.

Christ said current symptomatic correctional officers are tested and must be medically cleared to return to a facility to work. She said inmates with COVID-like symptoms are also tested.

Moving forward, Christ said the state health department would work with the University of Arizona to get antibody testing for all correctional officers.

“And then we will also be working with our correctional facilities to have epidemiologists go out and provide on-site technical assistance on infection control,” she said.

Christ said her department will be making sure that CDC guidelines are being implemented in the prisons and provide assistance.

→  Read The Latest News On The Coronavirus Disease 

Jimmy Jenkins is a senior field correspondent at KJZZ and a contributor to NPR’s Election 2020 and Criminal Justice station collaborations. His work has been featured on Morning Edition, All Things Considered, Marketplace, Here and Now, The Takeaway and NPR Newscasts.Originally from Terre Haute, Indiana, Jenkins has a B.S. in criminology from Indiana State University and a master’s degree in journalism from Indiana University.Much of his reporting has focused on the criminal justice system. Jenkins has reported on Tasers, body cameras, use of force, jail privatization, prison health care and the criminal contempt trial of former Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio.