18th person with virus in Oregon Corrections custody dies

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — A man who tested positive for the coronavirus while incarcerated at the Oregon State Correctional Institution in Salem has died, state officials said.

The state Department of Corrections said in a news release Thursday that the man described only as between 80 and 90 years old died at a local hospital on Monday. He was the 18th person in state corrections custody to die after testing positive.

The state has not been releasing the names of incarcerated people who have died after testing positive for the coronavirus, saying it’s in order to balance the desire for transparency with their legal obligation to protect personal health information.

In the Oregon Health Authority’s COVID-19 Weekly Outbreak Report released Wednesday, a catalog of active outbreaks lists three state correctional facilities with the most cumulative cases including Snake River, Eastern Oregon, and Oregon State. Since Nov. 18, more than 1,200 COVID-19 cases have been recorded at the three facilities, according to the report.