Forty-four cases of COVID-19 have been identified in the state prison in Fort Dodge.

The Iowa Department of Corrections reported Monday a total of 39 inmates and five staff members of the Fort Dodge Correctional Facility have tested positive for COVID-19.

On Thursday the count was one inmate and two staff members. Three staff members are now listed as recovered. Officials report the new outbreak surpasses the number of COVID-19 cases that were documented in Iowa’s prison system through last week.

Before this week, 35 inmates had tested positive. Most were at the Iowa Medical and Classification Center in Coralville. The center is the primary intake and quarantine facility for new inmates. Most of the positive cases first identified there are now classified as recovered.

(By Pat Powers, KQWC, Webster City)