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Multiple Allen County Jail inmates have "flu-like" symptoms

Monday, January 13, 2014 - 1:56 pm

Multiple inmates at the Allen County Jail are ill with flu-like symptoms.

In a proactive effort to contain the spread all prisoners in Allen County Superior Court were wearing masks Monday morning.

Jeremy Tinkel, public information officer for Allen County Sheriff's Department, would not confirm an outbreak but said there are multiple individuals exhibiting flu-like symptoms. At this time they do not know whether the inmates have the flu, but are taking measures to prevent the spread.

“Obviously when you have people living in close quarters it's important to take precautions against spreading the disease,” Tinkel said Monday morning.

They have been working together with the Fort Wayne-Allen County Health Department to vaccinate inmates and put into place procedures to contain the spread of the disease.

John Silcox, director of information for the health department, said the Allen County Jail contacted them on Friday for guidance on how to control the multiple cases of flu-like symptoms and keep the disease from spreading.

Silcox said he could not say what the specific guidelines had been, but they did provide flu shots for staff and inmates who had not been previously vaccinated. They also provided the jail with state test kits that allow them to test the inmates for disease and send the samples to the Indiana State Department of Health lab to see whether this is the flu.