two prison officers and a prisoner from the Midlands Prison are believed to have contracted Tuberculosis during an outbreak in the prison last month.
Although prisoners were all screeened for the disease, prison officers were understood to be annoyed that the authorities were very slow to screen officers.
The outbreak happened in the last four to six weeks, with prison staff feeling that the welfare of the prisoners was being put before theirs. There are concerns that the response to the outbreak has led to some tensions in the prison.
A spokesperson for the Irish Prison Services said that any medical issue involving the was an issue for the HSE.
The Prison Services press office said it was not an ussue for them to comment on because the HSE had dealt with the screening process, adding that the prison services were there to consult and facilitate in such matters.
When contacted about screening in the hospital, the HSE said they did not make any comment regarding the prison services. Neither the Prison Officers Association or the Govenor of the Midlands Prison, Colm Barclay could be contacted.
Despite the number families connected to the prison through prison officers and vistors to the prison it is not clear what public health measures are needed.
Deputy Brian Stanley said
“Health and Safety in the workplace needs to be a priority if there is an issue of prison officers contracting highly contagious disease this has implications for the community and people in workplaces need to be protected,” he said.
It is not yet clear what the condition of those infected is or if any further cases have emerged.
TB is a disease caused by germs that are spread from person to person through the air. TB usually affects the lungs, but it can also affect other parts of the body, such as the brain, the kidneys, or the spine. In most cases, TB is treatable; however, persons with TB can die if they do not get proper treatment.
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