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Konsu Health Supports Special Master in Assessing COVID-19 Conditions in Cumberland County Jail

October 30th, 2021

Konsu Health was selected by the U.S. federal court to provide medical and public health recommendations for managing COVID-19 conditions at the Cumberland County Jail in Bridgeton New Jersey. After multiple complaints and a lawsuit brought by inmates against the jail, attorney William J. Hughes, of Porzio, Bromberg & Newman, was appointed as Special Master by United States District Judge Noel L. Hillman. Working closely with the court, Mr. Hughes and Porzio Compliance Services, Konsu Health investigated conditions in this extremely difficult environment and contributed significantly to the policies and procedures that serve to keep inmates safe and healthy today.

Representing the court, Konsu Health was charged with providing recommendations regarding “COVID-19 testing, COVID-19 contact tracing of all jail inmates and staff, quarantining and isolation practices, including ventilation of designated isolation and quarantine areas, the availability and sufficiency of hand sanitizer, masks and other personal protective equipment, and cleaning supplies, social distancing measures and recreation, and any other issues related to COVID-19 affecting the inmate population.”  Konsu Health completed a thorough investigation, reviewing existing practices, protocols, interviewing inmates and employees, and inspecting physical conditions on multiple occasions.

Conditions at the jail were initially found to be subpar, with undefined protocols, inconsistent practices, and a shortage of both resources, staff and medical care. With social distancing not possible or very unlikely due to size and configuration of the jail’s housing units, Konsu Health had to strengthen other areas where change could be effective. This included tightening intake screening protocols, establishing quarantine units, improving testing and most importantly ensuring vaccine education and availability was easy to obtain.

The court accepted the recommendations provided by Konsu Health which were subsequently incorporated into the jail’s ongoing policies and procedures. The full report to the court can be found here.

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