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An inmate at one of California’s correctional institutions has died after contracting the novel coronavirus, becoming what is reportedly the first COVID-19 death in an inmate in the state.
The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) in a news release on Sunday announced the death of an inmate from California Institution for Men (CIM) in San Bernardino County. The inmate, who was treated at a local hospital before his death, passed away “from what appear to be complications related to COVID-19,” though an exact cause has “not yet been determined,” officials said.
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No other information was provided, though officials said at least 59 incarcerated persons at CIM have tested positive for COVID-19.
The death is reportedly the first in an inmate in California, The Associated Press reported.
The news comes as the state is stepping up efforts to prevent outbreaks among vulnerable populations, including people living in nursing homes, on the streets or in homeless shelters.
In a statement, the CDCR said it takes “the health and safety of all those who live and work in our state prisons very seriously and will continue to work diligently to address the COVID-19 pandemic.”
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There have been more than 30,000 confirmed cases of the novel virus in The Golden State, according to recent estimates.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.