Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - GDP: Nearly 100% of inmates vaccinated for Covid

GDP: Nearly 100% of inmates vaccinated for Covid

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Prisoners get vaccinated against Covid at Preah Sihanouk Provincial Prison last June. GDP

GDP: Nearly 100% of inmates vaccinated for Covid

As of April 5, almost 100 per cent of the 38,000 inmates in prisons across the country had received booster shots against Covid-19, with some having already received a fourth shot, according to General Department of Prisons (GDP) spokesman Nouth Savna.

Savna said the GDP had encouraged capital and provincial prisons to work with their counterpart health departments to ensure all prisoners vaccinations were kept up to date.

“There are very few prisoners who have not yet been vaccinated, and there are currently no cases of infection in the prisons. When new cases emerge ... we implement the measures recommended by the Ministry of Health immediately,” he said.

Svana said that representatives from the Red Cross and the UN in Cambodia had met with prison officials and had expressed their appreciation for the work the Kingdom had done in dealing with the pandemic. Its vaccine response was singled out for particular praise, with some suggesting Cambodia may have the most highly vaccinated prison population in the world.

“It is very special that the international community has appreciated what we have done. The rates of death and infection in our prisons are relatively low when compared to not just our neighbouring countries, but other nations around the world. We managed to control Covid-19 well. Even though Cambodia is a small country, we excel in other things,” Savna added.

Am Sam Ath, deputy director of rights group Licadho, recognised the government’s commitment to vaccinating detainees, saying it was the most necessary measure, because prisons in Cambodia were overcrowded. This affected the health and hygiene of prisoners, and meant infectious diseases like Covid-19 could easily be transmitted.

He added that if measures had not been taken in time, its spread would have been rapid and uncontrollable, but added that vaccinations and prevention alone were not enough. The most important action that needed to happen was to find ways to reduce overcrowding.

“Although the government has considered speeding up proceedings in the courts and issuing guidelines for the unconditional release of prisoners who are near to the end of their jail terms, as well as setting up a commission to monitor and release prisoners, the processes have not yet been implemented,” he said.

MOST VIEWED

  • Siem Reap drain canal now ‘mangrove’ promenade

    A more than half a kilometre long stretch of canal in Siem Reap has been covered and turned into a promenade to attract visitors, said Ly Rasmey, secretary of state at the Ministry of Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction, on September 16. The new pedestrianised

  • Angkor wildlife, aquarium park still to open October

    The Angkor Wildlife and Aquarium complex about 30km southeast of Siem Reap town with initial total investment of more than $70 million is reportedly still on track for an end-October opening. The park is located on a 100ha plot along National Road 6 in Kbon village, Khchas

  • Final verdicts for Khmer Rouge leaders ‘vital’ for next generation

    Nearly a decade after the commencement of Case 002/02 against Khieu Samphan back in 2014, the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC) is now set to deliver its final verdict for the former Khmer Rouge head of state. The Supreme Court Chamber of the ECCC,

  • Defence minister reaffirms Kingdom’s staunch support for One-China policy

    Minister of National Defence General Tea Banh has reaffirmed Cambodia’s unwavering support for the One-China policy. Tea Banh was speaking at the September 20 ceremonial handover of 117 vehicles and other military equipment donated by China’s defence ministry, held at Phnom Chumreay International Military Training

  • Deaths due to ‘lifestyle’ diseases rise in Kingdom

    The Ministry of Health has called on people to pay closer attention to their health to protect themselves from non-communicable diseases (NCDs) which it said have caused high rates of deaths in the country. Ministry secretary of state York Sambath made the call at a

  • Textile industry minimum wage now $200

    The official minimum wage for workers in textile-related sectors including garment, footwear, and travel goods for 2023 was pegged at $198, with Prime Minister Hun Sen stepping in to add $2 to the total, making it $200 per month. The Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training made the announcement