RIDGEVILLE, S.C. (WCSC) - Officials with the South Carolina Department of Corrections are set to begin testing inmates at a state prison in Berkeley County Friday as they focus their COVID-19 testing efforts based on infection rates.
Testing will begin at two housing units at MacDougall Correctional Institution in Berkeley County, where a second inmate died Tuesday from COVID-19.
Corrections Department officials say Anthony Lewis Clark Jr., 70, died at an outside hospital Tuesday. According to their report, Clark had several underlying medical conditions, and tested positive for the coronavirus July 7. Clark is the seventh state inmate to die from COVID-19.
As of Tuesday, 84 offenders and 11 staff members at MacDougall have tested positive for COVID19, the report stated.
Testing will continue until the institution’s 473 inmates are tested. MacDougall’s staff also will be tested next week.
The agency began testing inmates in two dorms at Kirkland and Tyger River Correctional Institutions last week, according to a release from the agency.
About 300 inmates in two dorms at Kirkland Correctional Institution were tested last week. Of 150 inmates in one dorm, 26 tested positive. One inmate out of 157 in the second dorm tested positive. Those inmates are now in isolation away from others. The inmates in the dorm where only one person tested positive were being retested Wednesday to make sure they are still negative. On Thursday, two additional dorms at Kirkland will be tested. The process will continue until all 1,573 inmates at the institution are tested.
Two units with 160 total inmates at Tyger River were tested Friday, with 78 inmates testing positive and 82 negative. The positive inmates have been separated and are in isolation. Work will continue through Friday at Tyger River, testing staff, two additional units and retesting the inmates who previously tested negative. After results are received, the process will continue next week until all 894 inmates at Tyger River are tested.