IONIA, MICH. — Of the nearly 900 positive cases of COVID-19 in the Michigan prison system, more than half of those cases are found in Ionia County, according to the Michigan Department of Corrections.
This is coming just about a week after it was announced by the MDOC that the UK variant of COVID-19 was found at Bellamy Creek Correctional Facility in Ionia. The variant is said to be more contagious and potentially more deadly than the original strain of coronavirus.
237 positive cases are at Bellamy Creek. Just down the road at the Michigan Reformatory, there are 252 cases of COVID-19.
“And it is spreading like wildfire,” said Maurisa, whose loved one is currently incarcerated at Bellamy Creek.
Maurisa asked we allow her to remain anonymous because she fears she or her loved one could face consequences if they are identified as having spoke to FOX 17.
“My concerns are that there are more positive cases than they’re letting people know about,” Maurisa said.
MDOC says case counts at its facilies have ebbed and flowed since the start of the pandemic.
Throughout the pandemic, we have seen case counts at our facilities ebb and flow.
Some facilities were not hit hard early on, and some saw spikes in the second wave last fall. Numbers around the state have been falling which is good to see. There has been a recent uptick at IBC, as we have begun testing all prisoners every day, to search for the variant, compared to the weekly testing we had been doing. For much of the pandemic, Bellamy Creek went relatively unscathed and they are now starting to see a larger number of positive cases.
As for Reformatory, they haven’t had any new covid cases in two weeks. They currently show 252 positive cases, but many of those should be moving to the step-down phase this week once the healthcare staff can review their cases.
The Ionia County Health Department has not responded to requests for comment as of publishing time.
SEE MORE: CORONAVIRUS IN WEST MICHIGAN