Metro Health working with sheriff’s office, CoreCivic on scabies outbreak

(Photo: WKRN)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – Health officials say they’re working with the sheriff’s office and the private company that runs a Nashville jail to contain and stop the outbreak of scabies.

The Metro Public Health Department says they’ve seen no newly-diagnosed cases since the first reports June 13 at CoreCivic’s facility in South Nashville. They’ve also been no newly-diagnosed cases in Metro’s clinic since June 19.

According to health officials, they are also reviewing sick logs from CoreCivic dating back to April 1.

CoreCivic officials have reportedly offered preventive treatment for scabies to all inmates at the Harding Place facility as recommended by the health department.

The private prison company is also following another recommendation by holding and treating any inmate with a rash before that inmate is sent to court.

CoreCivic is currently facing three lawsuits related to the outbreak, two from former inmates and a third from a Nashville lawyer.

Metro Health says scabies is a contagious, itchy skin condition caused by a tiny, burrowing mite. The most common symptoms of scabies are intense itching and a pimple-like skin rash.

The scabies mite is most easily spread by direct, prolonged, skin-to-skin contact with a person who has scabies, but can in some uncommon cases be spread more easily.

The incubation period (time from exposure to the development of an itchy rash) can be as short as 1 to 4 days for someone who has had it previously, and 2 to 6 weeks for someone who has not been previously exposed.

Health officials say itching can produce sores which can become infected from bacteria on the skin.

Scabies is reportedly not uncommon in correctional settings.