More than 100 inmates at Kerobokan Prison in Badung regency, Bali, tested positive for COVID-19 as of Saturday.
Of the 106 infected prisoners, 84 are men. All of them are currently being isolated in the Kuta block of the penitentiary.
“[The number of confirmed cases] might still be increasing because we are still waiting for more test results,” the Law and Human Rights Ministry’s Bali office spokesperson, I Putu Surya Dharma, said on Saturday.
He added that the prison conducted more COVID-19 swab tests on 136 inmates whose rapid antibody tests had come out reactive.
Prison authorities discovered a COVID-19 cluster in the penitentiary after carrying out mass COVID-19 antibody rapid testing from Monday to Wednesday, after several inmates complained of symptoms related to COVID-19, such as loss of smell and taste.
The results came out reactive for more than 630 prisoners.
Bali has recorded 11,279 confirmed COVID-19 cases as of Saturday.
Kerobokan Prison has been placed under lockdown and will not be accepting any new prisoners. Visits are currently prohibited but inmates can still receive food packages from their families.
Since the beginning of the outbreak, the Law and Human Rights Ministry’s corrections directorate general has been struggling to prevent COVID-19 transmissions in penitentiaries due to overcrowding and understaffing.
A COVID-19 cluster was recently discovered in a penitentiary in Jambi, with authorities reporting at least 31 infected prisoners on Oct. 15.
THE JAKARTA POST