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W.Va. prison inmate suffered COVID-19 complications before his death

A West Virginia state prison inmate who died in July suffered complications from COVID-19, the state Department of Homeland Security said on Wednesday.
A West Virginia state prison inmate who died in July suffered complications from COVID-19, the state Department of Homeland Security said on Wednesday.(Pixabay)
Published: Sep. 16, 2020 at 5:02 PM EDT
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CHARLESTON, W.Va (WTAP) - An autopsy conducted after the death of a West Virginia prison inmate in July showed the man suffered complications from COVID-19, the state’s Department of Homeland Security said on Wednesday.

The 73-year-old man died on July 17 in the infirmary at the Mount Olive Correctional Complex in Fayette County.

Officials said he had tested negative, but lab results received after his death came back positive. At the time, his death was attributed to his underlying health condition.

A death certificate received from the state Medical Examiner’s Office on Tuesday listed COVID-19 as a complicating factor. The certificate was based on autopsy results, officials said.

Meanwhile, officials said a more-recent death at the prison complex is possibly related to the virus.

The 54-year-old man died on Sept. 13 at a hospital outside the prison complex. Officials said he also had an underlying medical condition.

The man was hospitalized shortly after a positive COVID-19 test in late August, and state officials said Tuesday that the hospital’s preliminary assessment attributed his death to COVID-19. However, the state Division of Corrections and Rehabilitation is waiting on a report from the Medical Examiner’s office.

The Division of Corrections' only other COVID-19 related death was that of a Wood County man who died on Aug. 28. The 40-year-old inmate at the South Central Regional Jail died at an outside hospital.

Officials said he also had underlying medical conditions, and they attributed his death to complications from COVID-19.

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