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Article

Is There a Temporal Relationship between COVID-19 Infections among Prison Staff, Incarcerated Persons and the Larger Community in the United States?

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Center for Violence Prevention and Community Solutions, School of Criminology and Criminal Justice, 411 N. Central Ave., Room 600, Phoenix, AZ 85004, USA
2
Department of Sociology, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Sewell Social Sciences, 1180 Observatory Dr., Madison, WI 53706, USA
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Institute For Advanced Sustainability Studies, Berliner Str. 130, 14467 Potsdam, Germany
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Geoinformatics & Policy Analytics Laboratory, School of Information, University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX 78712, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Paul B. Tchounwou
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(13), 6873; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18136873
Received: 1 June 2021 / Revised: 21 June 2021 / Accepted: 22 June 2021 / Published: 26 June 2021
(This article belongs to the Collection COVID-19 Research)
Background: Our objective was to examine the temporal relationship between COVID-19 infections among prison staff, incarcerated individuals, and the general population in the county where the prison is located among federal prisons in the United States. Methods: We employed population-standardized regressions with fixed effects for prisons to predict the number of active cases of COVID-19 among incarcerated persons using data from the Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) for the months of March to December in 2020 for 63 prisons. Results: There is a significant relationship between the COVID-19 prevalence among staff, and through them, the larger community, and COVID-19 prevalence among incarcerated persons in the US federal prison system. When staff rates are low or at zero, COVID-19 incidence in the larger community continues to have an association with COVID-19 prevalence among incarcerated persons, suggesting possible pre-symptomatic and asymptomatic transmission by staff. Masking policies slightly reduced COVID-19 prevalence among incarcerated persons, though the association between infections among staff, the community, and incarcerated persons remained significant and strong. Conclusion: The relationship between COVID-19 infections among staff and incarcerated persons shows that staff is vital to infection control, and correctional administrators should also focus infection containment efforts on staff, in addition to incarcerated persons. View Full-Text
Keywords: COVID-19; incarceration; pandemic; incarcerated populations; correctional staff; prisons COVID-19; incarceration; pandemic; incarcerated populations; correctional staff; prisons
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MDPI and ACS Style

Wallace, D.; Eason, J.M.; Walker, J.; Towers, S.; Grubesic, T.H.; Nelson, J.R. Is There a Temporal Relationship between COVID-19 Infections among Prison Staff, Incarcerated Persons and the Larger Community in the United States? Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18, 6873. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18136873

AMA Style

Wallace D, Eason JM, Walker J, Towers S, Grubesic TH, Nelson JR. Is There a Temporal Relationship between COVID-19 Infections among Prison Staff, Incarcerated Persons and the Larger Community in the United States? International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2021; 18(13):6873. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18136873

Chicago/Turabian Style

Wallace, Danielle, John M. Eason, Jason Walker, Sherry Towers, Tony H. Grubesic, and Jake R. Nelson. 2021. "Is There a Temporal Relationship between COVID-19 Infections among Prison Staff, Incarcerated Persons and the Larger Community in the United States?" International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 18, no. 13: 6873. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18136873

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