MISSOULA — Local health officials report that two more confirmed COVID-19 cases have been reported in Missoula County.
The Missoula City-County Health Department reports one of the new cases was identified through testing, and the other was epidemiologically linked, bringing Missoula to 30 people who have tested positive and two “epi-linked” cases for a total of 32 cases.
Local health officials note cases that are “epi-linked” developed symptoms while in quarantine after being identified as close contacts to cases that tested positive. Epi-linked cases are isolated and monitored by public health, just like lab-confirmed positive cases.
Newly released numbers on Monday morning also show that 24 people have recovered from COVID-19 in Missoula County and there has been one death recorded. Seven people remain in isolation. Some of the new Missoula County cases are from community spread, which means we still have the potential for increased COVID-19 cases in our community.
Local health officials note that the State of Montana reports the number of cases that test positive while the Missoula City-County Health Department tracks all cases.
The state is reporting 394 cumulative confirmed COVID-19 cases as of Monday morning. Statewide, there have been 47 hospitalizations and seven deaths. The Flathead City-County Health Department confirmed the seventh death on Monday morning.
Local health officials noted in a news release that their numbers may differ from what the state is reporting, as they often find out results from private labs and updates numbers before the state.
The Missoula County COVID-19 info line can be reached by calling (406) 258-INFO weekdays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Additional local information about the coronavirus situation can be found here.
The health department has opened a drive-thru nasal swab testing site for COVID-19 at the Missoula County Fairgrounds. The facility can only be accessed by people with an appointment. Due to limited testing supplies, people have to fall into priority 1 or priority 2 categories in order to be tested.
The health department is continuing to emphasize the importance of social distancing, which means avoiding crowds and providing distance between yourself and another person when interacting. Businesses, groups, and other organizations are encouraged to find different ways of delivering services and holding meetings and events.
Whenever possible, stay home, limit exposure to large crowds, and use technology to meet your needs. Anyone who is in the vulnerable population recognize that you are at higher-risk, and should limit exposure as much as possible.
There are mental health resources and information available for residents who are in need of help. Click here for details on what services are available.
Anyone who has arrived in Missoula County after having traveled out of state in the past 14 days is asked to contact local health officials at (406) 258-3896. This applies to all travel, including vehicle travel.
Gov. Steve Bullock’s orders closing public schools and requiring people to stay home -- except for essential activities -- has been extended until April 24.