Soaring scabies and Covid cases set off alarms in Catalan prisons

CREDIT: Twitter

Soaring scabies and Covid cases set off alarms in Catalan prisons.

SOARING scabies and Covid cases set off alarms in Catalan prisons

Two of the most contagious diseases are currently rife in Catalan prisons – coronavirus and scabies, with the highest number of infections recorded in Quatre Camins jail.

Amost half of the 190 inmates have reportedly tested positive for Covid, and despite this, authorities refuse to carry out PCRs on officials, according to Moncloa sources.

“The penitentiary not only has the dubious honour of being the worst managed in all of Catalonia, but in all of Spain,” said one source, adding that the prison management have argued “prison wardens do not have direct with prisoners” and so it isn’t deemed necessary.

But there are fears that if a staff member is infected and asymptomatic, they could pass on the virus to their family members,

“We go home without knowing whether or not we are carriers,” the insider at the prison told the same publication.

But Covid isn’t the only concern. At least eight inmates from three different modules at the prison have been isolated after being treated for scabies.

An investigation is underway to determine how they became infected as the inmates were isolated, their clothes were immediately disinfected and treated, and they had not had contact with each other.

“The measures imposed by the pandemic are very strict and contact between inmates from different modules is prohibited, and there are no classes or workshops,” revealed the source.

According to data from the Association of the Corps of the Administration of Penitentiary Institutions (Acaip), a total of 176 cases of scabies have been registered in the last five years.

“There is a general rebound, but it is no less true that in prisons there is a tremendous deficit of health personnel,” said the association.

Figures from Penitentiary Institutions show that in 2015 there were 58 cases of scabies in Spanish prisons. The following year, the number fell to 45, before skyrocketing in 2017 to 95 cases.


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Written by

Tara Rippin

Tara Rippin is a reporter for Spain’s largest English-speaking newspaper, Euro Weekly News, and is responsible for the Costa Blanca region.
She has been in journalism for more than 20 years, having worked for local newspapers in the Midlands, UK, before relocating to Spain in 1990.
Since arriving, the mother-of-one has made her home on the Costa Blanca, while spending 18 months at the EWN head office in Fuengirola on the Costa del Sol.
She loves being part of a community that has a wonderful expat and Spanish mix, and strives to bring the latest and most relevant news to EWN’s loyal and valued readers.

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