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Department Of Health Services Director Says Arizona Has Begun Vaccinating Inmates In State Prisons

Arizona Department of Health Services Director Dr. Cara Christ said Friday that the Department of Corrections confirmed it had begun vaccinating inmates in prison infirmaries and it was planning to roll out vaccines to the rest of the population by age.

“I believe next week they'll be starting with those that are 55 and above," Christ said. "And then once they get those done, they’ll move to the next age group as well."

Christ did not know how many inmates have been vaccinated and the Department of Corrections has not answered repeated questions regarding the vaccination timeline or additional details about vaccinations in the prisons.

6,600 inmates in state-run prisons have been identified as high risk for COVID based on their age and health status.

More than 12,000 inmates have contracted COVID and 55 have died from the virus.

Jimmy Jenkins was a producer and senior field correspondent at KJZZ from 2014 to 2021.