Nearly all Wisconsin prisoners who got virus have recovered

MADISON — Nearly every inmate and worker in a Wisconsin prison who tested positive for COVID-19 has recovered, the state Department of Corrections reported Monday.

Of the 268 inmates who tested positive, 261 have recovered. There are six active cases and one who was released, the department said. Among prison staff, there were 66 positive cases and 63 have recovered. There are three active cases.

Most of the cases among inmates, 228, were at the Waupun Correctional Institution.

The state’s prisons were 22% above capacity as of Friday. Waupan, designed for 882 inmates but housing 1,204, was 36% above capacity.

The recovery rates within the state’s prisons so far are better than in the general population. According to the state Department of Health Services, so far 3% of those who have tested positive have died.

“The entire DOC staff and especially our Emergency Operations Center team took proactive steps to protect both staff members and the persons in our care,” said Corrections Secretary Kevin Carr in a statement. “These latest numbers reflect the tremendous job they have done, so far.”

The state health department along with assistance from the Wisconsin National Guard has tested everyone at 22 of the state’s 37 prison facilities so far.