SEVENTEEN inmates of Cork prison have been tested for Covid-19 in the past two months, according to figures provided by the Department of Justice.
Just two inmates had to be isolated in the prison, after showing symptoms of the disease.
However, tests have proved negative and there have been no cases of the virus in the prison system across the country.
Six prison officers in Cork tested positive for the virus.
Efforts have been made throughout the prison system to free up space to allow for the isolation of inmates in case of an outbreak among the prison population.
Yesterday, there were 266 inmates in the prison while 63 were on temporary release. There were 30 spaces in the prison, which has a bed capacity for 296 inmates.
Under legislation, temporary release can be for just a few hours or for a more extended period. Concerns about overcrowding in Cork were heard at the Prison Officers Association conference in Sligo last May.
Throughout the past year, prior to Covid-19, figures in the prison spiked and the building was regularly at capacity, or overcrowded.
According to the Irish Prison Service, the body ensures that at all times, up to date public health advice is followed by all staff, ensuring the need to self isolate where appropriate, and on foot of medical/public health advice.