Bureau of Corrections remains COVID-19 free; inmates ‘try not to be close together’

Bureau of Corrections (BuCor) said their facilities are still COVID-19 free as inmates “try not to be close together, Wednesday.

BuCor has distributed disposable facial masks and to inmates under its custody.

Col. Gabriel Chaclag, BuCor spokesperson, said they had not recorded any coronavirus case in their facilities, which include the New Bilibid Prison in Muntinlupa City.

“So far, we have no PUIs (persons under investigation),” he said in a message. “BuCor remains COVID-19 free, and we hope and pray to stay that way.”

BuCor also suspended visitations in all of its facilities, except food deliveries that “go through stringent screening,” Chaclag said. He also said they bought personal protective equipment and a misting machine for disinfection.

“We have distributed alcohol and protective masks. They also try not to be close together,” he said when asked if the BuCor how they practice social distancing.

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Bureau of Corrections remains COVID-19 free; inmates ‘try not to be close together’

Chaclag said the bureau is working with local authorities and has arranged with partner hospitals in case an inmate or their personnel would be infected with COVID-19.

“We are also conducting information drive for the PDLs (persons deprived of liberty) to be educated in personal hygiene to fight spread of diseases,” he said. “All [this] we do in all prison camps and continuously assess our readiness.”

The BuCor has seven facilities nationwide: Bilibid, the Correctional Institution for Women, the Iwahig, Davao, San Ramon, Sablayan prison and penal farms, and the Leyte Regional Prison.

The number of inmates in Bilibid alone is more than 49,000 as of January 2020.

As of this afternoon, Wednesday, the Philippines has 193 confirmed cases of coronavirus.