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Thursday, December 17, 2009 — Visitation restrictions at the Cook County Jail are set to be lifted on Friday.

Since Dec. 4, the jail has limited visits and prohibited some detainees from having in-person visits due to the spread of influenza A, or the H1N1 virus. That decision came after consultation with Cermak Hospital staff and follows a recommendation from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control.

In a four-week period from early November through early December, there were 26 confirmed cases of H1N1 among the jail’s approximately 9,200 detainees, leading to the restrictions. But in the last two weeks, there have been only five new cases reported.

Since the visitation restrictions were put in place, visits have been limited to clergy, attorneys, embassies and immediate family members over the age of 18. Those same restrictions were put in place due to H1N1 concerns in May. Detainees confirmed to have H1N1 have been held in isolated cells and have only been allowed to have visits with attorneys, who talk with their client over the phone.

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