MISSOULA - It was exactly three weeks ago that classes at the University of Montana began for the fall semester, and as expected, confirmed cases of COVID-19 are beginning to surface on campus.
The Missoula City-County Health Department has begun to post a breakdown of UM's confirmed cases on its website. The UM COVID numbers will be updated every Wednesday.
To date, there have been a total of six COVID-19 cases confirmed at UM, and three of those cases are considered active at this time.
Each of those active cases has an average of 12 close contacts, which Missoula COVID- 19 Incident Commander Cindy Farr says is standard as far as close contacts go.
Farr says her team is still tweaking how they’ll go about posting those UM cases, she says they want to be transparent while still protecting the privacy of their patients.
"But, we do want to be able to have that transparency, and the University wants to have that transparency, not only so that people know what their risk is...to get a better picture of their risk when they're going onto campus or if they live on campus or work on campus," Farr said.
"But also so that the broader community can see that just because school started we didn't see a huge spike in cases, you know that it really the cases remain pretty small and pretty manageable," she added.
Farr said she expects those case numbers to rise as the weather cools off and people can’t recreate outside as much.
(first report: 1:40 p.m. - Sept. 9, 2020)
The Missoula City-County Health Department is reporting that there have been a total of six COVID-19 cases confirmed at the University of Montana.
Among the cases are a pair that have been reported since Sept. 2. There are currently three active cases being reported.
It was announced on Sept. 4 that the Missoula City-County Health Department would be providing a breakdown of UM COVID-19 cases on Wednesdays.
Overall, local public health officials reported on Wednesday an additional six COVID-19 cases in Missoula County.
There are currently 37 active cases. To date, a total of 459 COVID-19 cases have been confirmed, including five epi-linked cases.
There have been 419 recoveries and three COVID-19 related deaths in Missoula County.