UCLA Law

COVID Behind Bars Data Project

We collect and analyze public information about the coronavirus pandemic in prisons, jails, youth facilities, and immigration detention centers across the United States. Our centralized source of data enables greater oversight of and accountability for carceral institutions’ responses to the pandemic behind bars. We also record legal and community responses to the crisis, including mass releases, legal filings, court orders, and organizing efforts.

Since the start of the pandemic, prisons and ICE detention centers across the U.S. have reported at least:

603,515

total cumulative cases among incarcerated people

3,108

total cumulative deaths among incarcerated people

210,190

total cumulative cases among staff

308

total cumulative deaths among staff

Showing in carceral facilities

Each spike represents the number incarcerated people who currently have COVID-19

1

67

130

This map displays COVID-19 cases and related deaths of people incarcerated in prisons and jails across the US. Click on a state to access more data.

This map displays reported COVID-19 cases and related deaths of people incarcerated in carceral facilities across the US. Click on a state to access more data.

Rates and active cases are not available for all facilities. Learn why.

Facilities with the highest

Cumulative CasesActive CasesCumulative DeathsTests
FacilityCountPer 10kCountPer 10kCountPer 10kCountPer 10k

Maricopa County Jail

Arizona

3,7016,9751332510052,48698,918

ICE Karnes County Residential Center

Texas

2,902322,44412714,11100----

California Health Care Facility

California

1,0523,6931224282070----

Fluvanna Correctional Center For Women

Virginia

1,0499,6951161,07200----

Pelican Bay State Prison

California

6652,51110941200----

COVID-19 Vaccines in State and Federal Prisons

This table reflects data publicly reported by state and federal correctional agencies about the administration of COVID-19 vaccines to incarcerated people and staff in their facilities. The data reported here generally refer to people who have received at least one dose of a vaccine. There are some exceptions, noted with a flag, when agencies report only the number of people who have completed their vaccination schedules, and not the number of people partially vaccinated. Staff are generally not required to report their vaccination status to their employers, so the total numbers of staff who are vaccinated may be higher.

View our data on Github
JurisdictionVaccination Rate for Incarcerated PeopleVaccination Rate for Staff Members
8100%7300%
110%--
97%49%
90%85%
88%70%

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May 9th, 2022

What We Won't Know When the Next Surge Arrives

Public health experts are again predicting new COVID surges in the coming weeks, and incarcerated people are still at heightened risk for infection and death. But still, two years into the pandemic, there are enormous gaps in what the public will know.

April 7th, 2022

UPDATE: Data Reporting & Quality Scorecard, Round 6

A year ago, we launched our Data Reporting and Quality Scorecards to assess COVID data reporting and quality by carceral agencies. We're updating our scorecards again to reflect the current realities of COVID data reporting behind bars. This round, 49 of 53 agencies received a failing score – the most ever.

March 18th, 2022

Failure to Decarcerate Jails Has Led to Unnecessary Deaths and Widespread Infection During Omicron Surge

Recent data show that, since the Omicron variant first appeared in the U.S., COVID case numbers in local and county jails across the country have increased rapidly, leaving people in jails at high risk of infection and death from the virus once again.

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