As cases of COVID-19 at meatpacking plants nationwide continue to rise, the numbers of those infected at meatpacking plants in Kansas have increased, as well.
According to KDHE, there are seven clusters of the outbreak at meatpacking plants statewide. This amounts to more than 2,100 people who are actively infected with the virus and are on leave from the plants.
Dodge City has the highest concentration of cases at meatpacking plants, as two large facilities are situated in the city. Cargill has slightly under 600 cases, while National Beef has just under 650 cases. While National Beef in Liberal has 450 cases and Sugar Creek Packing in Frontenac, just outside of Pittsburg, has fewer than 200 cases. Since the beginning of the virus, 108 patients from meatpacking plants in Kansas were hospitalized and 19 have died.
Statewide, 495 people have succumbed to the virus, out of which 251 were in long-term care facilities. Of the Kansans who died, 79% were 65 years old and older, having a median age of 79. The amount of deaths per total population amounts to 17 out of 100,000 people.
Although long-term care facilities have the most deaths, 308, and hospitalizations, the numbers of those infected by the virus is higher at the meatpacking facilities. According to the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union, which represents 1.3 million workers in meatpacking plants and grocery stores nationwide, there have been at least 122 meatpacking worker deaths and more than 18,000 meatpacking workers infected or exposed to COVID-19 in the U.S.