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Inmate dies, 18 recovering after Putnamville prison illness outbreak

PUTNAMVILLE, Ind. (WISH) — One inmate died and 18 others were treated after an illness outbreak at the Putnamville Correctional Facility, an official said Sunday.

Prison superintendent Brian Smith said in a statement that several inmates started getting sick last week.

As their symptoms worsened, some were admitted to the hospital. One of those died at the hospital Friday, Smith said.

As of Sunday afternoon, nine offenders were in the Terre Haute Regional Hospital. Another nine were under observation at the prison, one of which is on a ventilator.

Those affected showed flu and pneumonia-like symptoms, according to Smith.

The Indiana State Department of Health, Indiana Department of Corrections and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are investigating the cause of the illness.

“Appropriate safety precautions are being taken at the facility to protect the offender population and staff, including isolation, bleaching of the unit, precautionary masks, etc,” Smith said.

Visitation at the facility has been canceled until further notice.