This CDC report provides the first documentation of the number of reported laboratory-confirmed cases of COVID-19 in correctional and detention facilities in the United States.
Aggregate data on COVID-19 cases between April 22–28, 2020 was collected from 37 of 54 state and territorial health department jurisdictions.
Among 37 jurisdictions reporting, 32 (86%) reported at least one confirmed COVID-19 case among incarcerated or detained persons or staff members, across 420 correctional and detention facilities. As of April 21, 2020, 4,893 cases and 88 deaths among incarcerated and detained persons and 2,778 cases and 15 deaths among staff members have been reported.
The CDC recommends prompt identification of COVID-19 cases and consistent application of prevention measures in order to protect incarcerated and detained persons, correctional and detention facility staff members, and the communities to which they return. The face that approximately one half of facilities with COVID-19 cases reported them among staff members but not among incarcerated persons suggests that staff might be an important source of virus introduction into facilities.