MADISON, Wis. (AP) — At least two inmates of a Wisconsin prison have died after contracting the coronavirus, a medical examiner has confirmed.
The Dodge County Medical Examiner’s Office said two prisoners at the Dodge Correctional Institution died in September, the Wisconsin State Journal reported. The state Department of Corrections does not report the deaths because of privacy laws.
“As it relates to the death of any person in our care, the DOC is a HIPAA-covered entity and privacy protections prevent us from sharing information related to their medical diagnoses or cause of death,” DOC said in a Wednesday statement.
A 63-year-old man died Sept. 12 from COVID-19, Dodge County Medical Examiner PJ Schoebel said. He had preexisting health conditions, including diabetes, obesity and high blood pressure, but Schoebel said an autopsy determined that the primary cause of death was COVID-19.
On Sept. 15, a 62-year-old man who tested positive for COVID-19 while incarcerated at Dodge Correctional died of lung cancer. The coronavirus infection was a contributing factor to his death, Schoebel said.
Two other Wisconsin prisons, Kettle Moraine Correctional Institution and Oshkosh Correctional Institution, are in the midst of large-scale COVID-19 outbreaks.
As of Wednesday, Kettle Moraine, in Sheboygan County, had 417 active cases among inmates, which is the largest outbreak in a Wisconsin prison yet.
Sheboygan County Medical Examiner Chris Nehring said there have been no reported COVID-19 deaths, or any deaths for that matter, at Kettle Moraine within the last six months.
The Winnebago County Coroner’s Office declined to comment on whether any COVID-19 deaths have occurred at Oshkosh Correctional, which had 344 active positive cases among inmates as of Wednesday.