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Florida inmate COVID-19 deaths top 200

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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – More than 200 Florida prison inmates have died of COVID-19 since the pandemic started early last year, according to information released Wednesday by the state Department of Corrections and the state Department of Health.

The information showed 204 inmates have died from the virus, up from 196 during a count last week. Also, six prison staff members have died of COVID-19, up one from last week.

The Reception and Medical Center in Union County has been linked to 44 inmate deaths, while the South Florida Reception Center in Miami-Dade County has been linked to 24, according to a breakdown on the Florida Department of Health website.

Union Correctional Institution has had 15 inmate deaths, while Columbia Correctional Institution and Dade Correctional Institution have each had 10.

In all, 17,614 inmates have tested positive for COVID-19 since the pandemic began, according to the Florida Department of Corrections website. That was up from 17,560 last week. Also, 4,953 corrections workers have tested positive, up from 4,603 last week.