Local News

Sheriff's office confirms case of scabies in county jail

SEBRING - Over the last week there have been approximately six inmates seen by medical staff with complaints of itching and some with skin rash.

Lab tests confirmed scabies Feb. 27. A local dermatologist confirmed with one inmate the presence of scabies, according to a press release from the Highlands County Sheriff's Office.

With medical confirmation, the Highlands County Sheriff's Office began following the protocol outlined by the Center of Disease Condrol (CDC). The entire jail population will be provided an oral medication and all bedding, clothing and housing areas within the jail will be treated. The treatment will also be offered to all sheriff's office members who have been exposed.

According to the CDC, scabies is a common condition found worldwide. It affects people of all races and social classes. Scabies can spread easily under crowded conditions where close body and skin contact is common. Institutions such as jails and prisons, nursing homes or extended care facilities are often sites of scabies outbreaks.

According to Sheriff Susan Benton, the jail is housing approximately 400 inmates a day at the present time. "This is a huge undertaking. An operational plan has been developed and we should have the medication by today," she said Friday. "The first round of treatment and preventative sanitation should be completed by Monday, March 3. A second round of medication is required in two weeks."