GEORGE TOWN: The Penang Remand Prison has strictly adhered to all standard operating procedures (SOP) to prevent the spread of Covid-19 after one of its inmates died on Monday.
The 85-year-old inmate, with a history of high blood pressure and mental illness had tested positive for Covid-19.
Penang Remand Prison director Mohamed Jusoh Ismail said all wardens and inmates who had close contact with the inmate who died, had been quarantined and separated from the others.
He, however, did not provide details of the close contact.
“We always adhere to the SOPs set by the Health Ministry and the Prisons Department.
“I can’t reveal the number of those separated but they (wardens and inmates) were in close contact with the inmate who died, and had undergone quarantine. They had even undergone the Covid-19 test yesterday.
“Today, more (wardens and inmates) were also screened for Covid-19 inside the prison. Even the state Health Department director was present to monitor the situation,” he said.
Checks by the New Straits Times at the Penang Remand Prison showed several Health Ministry vehicles entering and exiting the premises.
Also spotted was state Health Department director Dr Asmayani Khalib.
They started entering the premises since 9am to conduct Covid-19 screening.
Jusoh said, for now, those quarantined did not show any symptoms.
He added that other wardens and inmates were also in good condition, and showed no symptoms.
At present, there are some 2,300 inmates and 320 wardens at the Penang Remand Prison.
“The Health Ministry has yet to inform where the inmate who died contracted Covid-19.
“Based on prison information, the last movement of the inmate who died was on Sept 9,” he added.
Yesterday, Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah confirmed the death of an 85-year-old Covid-19 patient here on Monday.
He said the deceased was found unconscious at 7am and was taken to the Penang Hospital, where he was pronounced dead at about 7.50am.
Covid-19 test conducted on the deceased came back positive.
Penang yesterday reported three Covid-19 cases, with one death, bringing the total number of positive cases to 152.
The Penang Remand Prison is the third prison to report Covid-19 infection after Tawau in Sabah and Alor Star in Kedah.