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No illness reported among St. James SOE detainees since April

Dr. Marcia Johnson Campbell, Medical Officer of Health for St. James
 
The St. James Health Department says it has had no report of illness among detainees under the state of emergency in the parish since April.
 
Dr. Marcia Johnson Campbell, Medical Officer of Health for St. James, said public health inspectors have visited the detention centre at the Freeport police station eight times since the state of emergency was imposed in January.
 
She said in January, there were challenges with ventilation, lighting, reports of delays in meals, skin rashes and inadequate hand-washing facilities.
 
Dr. Johnson Campbell said the department made a return in March in response to a case of chicken pox, then in April in relation to a gastroenteritis outbreak. There have been no medical cases since. 
 
Dr. Johnson Campbell said other issues addressed by the health department related to lack of facilities for drying laundry.
 
Public Defender Arlene Harrison Henry has said detainees are being held in poor and unsanitary conditions, but the police have disputed her account.
 
Fewer inmates 
 
In the meantime, Dr. Johnson Campbell said the number of inmates in the holding areas at Freeport has been declining since the state of emergency started.
 
She said in January, there were 116 inmates in 30 cells.
 
Another 18 were in a separate area waiting to be released.
 
Dr. Johnson Campbell revealed Thursday on RJR's call-in programme, Hotline, that the number of detainees is now at five. 
 


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