Victorian prison records COVID-19 case

·1-min read

The Victorian prison system has recorded its first COVID-19 case in more than a year.

A prisoner at the Metropolitan Remand Centre at Ravenhall tested positive for coronavirus on Sunday, a Department of Justice spokeswoman confirmed.

The prisoner is asymptomatic and has been in quarantine since they arrived at the maximum-security facility on Friday.

Five staff members have been identified as primary close contacts and will be furloughed until they are cleared by the health department.

The movement of hundreds of other prisoners has been temporarily restricted while contact tracing is underway.

COVID-19 Commander Jeroen Weimar said there was no evidence of any onward transmission at the facility.

He said as community transmission of COVID-19 increases, it was likely more workplaces would be "touched" by the virus.

"We have seen over the last few weeks, a number of incursions into healthcare settings, into aged care facilities and remand centres, also a detention centre, cases coming from the community," he told reporters on Monday.

"We can't afford for the virus to go into some of our most sensitive workplaces and every day we need to manage that risk."

All new prisoners are tested and required to spend 14 days in protective quarantine, regardless of their COVID-19 risk.

As of September 10, 63 per cent of adult prisoners in both public and private prisons have received their first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine and 45 per cent are fully vaccinated.

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