The Bureau of Corrections (BuCor) has 117 confirmed cases of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) with 4 of its prisoners dying from the dreaded disease, the Department of Justice (DOJ) confirmed on Friday.

40 of the COVID-19 patients recorded are inmates at the New Bilibid Prison while 77 are from the Correctional Institution for Women (CIW), according to Justice Undersecretary Markk Perete.

Among the 4 fatalities, three came from CIW and one from the Bilibid.

In a bit of good news, nine inmates have successfully beaten the infectious disease. 8 of them are persons deprived of liberty (PDL) from CIW.

Perete added that 4 more inmates have tested negative but are still waiting for confirmation, which will be counted on top of the total recoveries recorded. 

CIW COVID-19 patients who were treated in a quarantine facility at the Bilibid will be transferred back to Mandaluyong in line with the “augmentation of the quarantine facility” there, Perete said. 

Meanwhile, BuCor has not confirmed any COVID-19 cases in their other five facilities across the country. 

Some groups have requested for the release of the elderly and inmates with underlying medical conditions due to their vulnerability to COVID-19.

The DOJ responded by simplifying the requirements for applications for parole and executive clemency.  (RJ Espartinez)