Illinois has tested fewer than 2% of inmates for COVID-19.
Thousands have been quarantined across multiple facilities because of potential exposure and 11 have died, according to information released by the Illinois Department of Corrections.
This low level of testing has raised alarm among advocates and lawmakers.
They say it makes it difficult, if not impossible, to understand the true picture of the outbreak in Illinois prisons and respond to it appropriately. That includes taking steps to contain the outbreak and limit its spread into the communities where prisons are located, which are oftentimes rural and may have limited hospital capacity.
About 186 inmates and 160 staff members had tested positive for COVID-19 according as of Friday, according to IDOC’s website. Of those individuals, the vast majority have recovered: 119 staff and 146 inmates.