Public Health, Corrections working closely to avoid prison outbreak

Kingston’s Chief Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Kieran Moore, said that he is not concerned about spread of COVID-19 at local corrections facilities, following news that an employee of Correctional Service Canada (CSC) has tested positive for the disease.

“From my communication, this person had not had any contact with any inmates,” Dr Moore said in a press conference on Monday, June 29, 2020. 

Dr. Moore stated that during their investigation of an outbreak of Binh’s Nails salon last week, Kingston Frontenac Lennox & Addington Public Health became aware that one COVID-19-positive individual worked for CSC. 

“We are in regular communication with our federal corrections partners,” he said. “I believe there was only the one worker who attended work while potentially infectious. That person was masked and had limited or no exposure to inmates, was quickly identified and removed from work, and is being monitored by our team under case and contact management.”

According to CSC, there are currently two inmates awaiting test results for COVID-19 in the KFL&A region: one at Joyceville Institution, and one at Collins Bay Institution. Dr. Moore confirmed that KFL&A Public Health and CSC have a strong partnership and are working in close collaboration. “We’re lucky,” he said, “and we are not concerned about any spread in the institutions to date.”

Nail salon outbreak update

As of 1 p.m. on Monday, June 29, 2020, there were 27 active cases of COVID-19 in Kingston in connection with the outbreak at Binh’s Nails and Spa. An estimated 500 people who passed through the salon in the past two weeks, as well as their close contacts, have been asked to present for testing at Kingston’s COVID-19 assessment centre.

KFL&A Public Health also announced an employee at a second nail salon, Kingdom Nails and Spa, had tested positive for COVID-19 on Saturday June 27, 2020. KFL&A Public Health recommends anyone who visited the salon on June 17 or between June 23 to June 25 should be tested, and remain in quarantine while they await results.

Samantha Butler-Hassan, Local Journalism Initiative

Samantha Butler-Hassan is a staff writer and life-long Kingston resident. She is a news junkie and mom who loves reading and exploring the community. This article has been made possible with the support of the Local Journalism Initiative.

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