STERLING, Colo. — The Department of Corrections (DOC), in collaboration with the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE), tested 473 symptomatic and asymptomatic inmates for COVID-19 at the Sterling Correctional Facility on Wednesday.
Results from those tests have not all been finalized, but as of noon Friday, 255 results have been returned. Out of those 255, 138 are positive, 104 are negative, 12 are inconclusive and 1 was unsatisfactory.
The inmates that were tested were from several different units of the east side of the facility, including units where inmates have either tested positive or were previously quarantined. The facility previously had 8 offenders that had tested positive.
“Given the insidious nature of this virus we had suspected that despite seeing a relatively low number of inmates with symptoms, the number of positives was potentially much higher,” said Department of Corrections Executive Director, Dean Williams. “That is exactly why we conducted this large scale testing, so that we can continue to isolate, monitor and treat any inmates who were positive and try to mitigate the spread to others inside the facility.”
Sterling Correctional Facility has been on Phase III modified operations since April 14. Phase III operations mean that inmates remain in their cells during the quarantine period outside of using the restrooms or showering. All meals and medications are delivered to inmates in their living units. The inmates have access to their normal personal property during the quarantine period, as well as access to mail.
The facility has continued to undergo extensive cleaning multiple times a day and staff and inmates are all required to wear face coverings in the facility at all times. All of the inmates on the east side of the facility are having temperature checks done twice daily as an additional screening measure.
Detailed information on DOC’s Response to the COVID-19 pandemic can be found at: https://www.colorado.gov/pacific/cdoc/covid-19-faq-and-updates.