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Inmates to be moved from two prisons because of valley fever threat

July 3, 2013

California corrections officials announced Tuesday they will comply with a federal judge's order to move inmates at risk of contracting valley fever out of two San Joaquin Valley prisons.

Just how this is to be done remains unclear.

Jeffrey Callison, spokesman for the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, said in a prepared statement that the agency "is now working on the complicated logistics of transferring approximately 2,600 … inmates who may fall under the court's order."

In anticipation of a recurrence of the infrequently deadly disease – caused in agricultural areas by airborne dust that enters the lungs as a fungus when spores are inhaled – the department has moved 560 medically high-risk inmates out of the two institutions since Jan. 1, Callison said.

U.S. District Judge Thelton E. Henderson of San Francisco ordered all African American and Filipino prisoners moved out of Pleasant Valley and Avenal state prisons. They are considered to have an increased risk of contracting valley fever, clinically known as coccidioidomycosis.

Read the full article on The Sacramento Bee website.