No positive cases of Covid-19 have been reported at Polokwane Correctional Centre since the outbreak of the pandemic in the country.
This is according to Tshidi Mapole, Regional Coordinator Communications for the Department of Correctional Services (DCS) for Limpopo, Mpumalanga and North West region following a sanitising and screening session at the centre recently.
Mapole said DCS suspend all offender activities for the duration of the lockdown, to put in place preventative and mitigating measures to curb the spread of Covid-19.
These preventative measures include, amongst others, ensuring that all DCS centres are Covid-19 free or minimal by rolling out testing at all points of entry for inmates, officials and contractors. “Instilling a prevention behaviour has been key at this stage for DCS. Hence awareness and educational programmes about Covid-19 have been offered to inmates and officials”.
She added that containment and treatment measures will be activated in the event of a staff member or inmate testing positive. “These will include isolation of the presumptive cases, quarantine and referrals of the confirmed cases to the designated provincial hospitals for further treatment. Isolation and quarantine areas have been identified and prepared.”
“There is a greater emphasis on prevention measures, looking at screening of inmates and officials, improving personal and environmental hygiene, provision of personal protective equipment, sanitisation and decontamination interventions. The department activated Infection Prevention Control (IPC) measures at all management areas with specific directives to ensure that Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) is availed and has pushed for the sanitation of reception areas, cells, offices, vehicles and ablution facilities. In addition, movement of inmates has since been limited, activities involving personal contact of inmates have been suspended,” Mapole concluded.
Story: Herbert Rachuene