TOPEKA– Kansas Department of Corrections (KDOC) Secretary Jeff Zmuda announced Thursday that 43 residents at the Larned Correctional Mental Health Facility (LCMHF) have tested positive for COVID-19, according to a media release from the agency.
The first staff member at LCMHF tested positive on August 8 and 262 residents were tested based on the contact tracing that occurred.
The residents at LCMHF are all males, ranging in age from above the age of 20 to above the age of 60. In order to protect their identities, no other information will be released. Mandatory mask protocol was implemented on July 7 for both staff and residents.
The KDOC has been in consultation with officials from the Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) on next steps to address these circumstances. As a result of that consultation with KDHE, the following steps were implemented:
- All 43 men were moved to the Lansing Correctional Facility (LCF) COVID-19 unit as per department protocol
- Contact tracing will continue to identify what staff and residents have been in direct contact with the individuals
- Those who tested negative will quarantine at LCMHF
- Additional testing will take place as we continue to work to control the spread and KDOC will remain diligent in monitoring other staff and residents for symptoms
“Families are understandably anxious, and we want them to know that we will be working hard to ensure the health and safety of their loved ones,” Zmuda said. “We continue to stress with our staff and residents the importance of adhering to our mask protocols, good hand hygiene and social distancing.”