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3rd Utah State Prison inmate dies after contracting COVID-19

Posted at 10:40 PM, Nov 16, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-17 00:46:18-05

DRAPER, Utah — The Utah State Prison has reported its third coronavirus-related inmate death.

The 50-year-old man died Saturday and was hospitalized with COVID-19 at the time of his death, a press release from the Utah Department of Corrections (UDC) stated Monday.

The prisoner was one of the first to test positive and was initially receiving treatment at the Wasatch Facility's infirmary. On Oct. 12, he was taken to a hospital for "escalated treatment," the UDC said.

Although prison officials believe the novel coronavirus contributed to the man's death, it was not yet confirmed if it was the direct cause.

"While it is believed his death was COVID-related, per protocol the cause of death will be determined by the medical examiner," the UDC wrote.

The previous two inmate deaths believed to be related to or caused by COVID-19 were also not confirmed as the official cause when they were announced. The UDC said their causes of death would be determined by the medical examiner also. They were:

  1. 82-year-old man in the Oquirrh 5 facility in Draper; Tested positive Oct. 30, died Nov. 4. Not hospitalized; No symptoms reported.
  2. A 70-year-old man also in Oquirrh 5 facility; Tested positive Nov. 4, died Nov. 11. Hospitalized at time of death.

The families of all three men were notified, but their names were not released.

As of this article being published, the prison had not publicly confirmed whether the cause of the inmates' death had been determined.

Click here to read more about outbreaks and containment efforts in the prison system on the UDC's website.