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Over 500 inmates in Arizona prison test COVID-19 positive

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More than 500 inmates at a prison in the US state of Arizona have tested positive for the novel coronavirus, authorities said.

In a statement on Wednesday, the Arizona Department of Corrections, Rehabilitation and Reentry (ADCRR) said that 517 inmates at the ASPC-Tucson Whetstone prison have contracted the virus and were been housed in separate areas while receiving medical care, reports Xinhua news agency.

“They will not be allowed back into the general population until they have been medically cleared,” the statement added.

Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, the ADCRR said that it has taken significant actions to mitigate the risk and impacts of COVID-19 in its facilities.

“Keeping our staff, inmates and communities safe continues to be our top priority,” the statement added.

The Whetstone unit currently houses 1,066 inmates.

According to the Arizona Department of Health Services, the state, one of the worst-hit in the US, has so far reported a total of 182,203 confirmed COVID-19 cases and 3,932 deaths, with no recoveries registered yet.

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