The Cascade City-County Health Department in Great Falls on Friday evening issued a public health order that limits group gatherings in Cascade County to 250 people at indoor events and 500 people at outdoor venues.
The news release says that organizers of any event between 100 and 500 people must submit an event packet to the City-County Health Department for review and approval prior to the activity taking place. Click here to view the event packed (PDF).
Trisha Gardner, the CCHD health officer, said in a news release that large gatherings are known to be a cause of the spread of COVID-19 and additional cases hurt public health’s ability to do case isolation, contact tracing, and quarantining of people close to cases.
Gardner explained, “The recent rise in cases is very concerning, and large events are known to be a contributing factor in the increasing caseload.”
The CCHD also announced on Friday evening that they have identified five new cases of COVID-19; this brings the cumulative number to 49 cases in Cascade County, 17 of which are active.
One new case was found through contact tracing - a man in his 20s. Four people acquired COVID-19 through community spread: a man in his 50s; a woman in her 20s; a woman in her 70s, and a man in his 30s. As in all cases, these people are isolated and CCHD is conducting contact tracing.
- Free drive-through testing is available in Great Falls from Alluvion Health; click here for location and times.
- Disclosure of patient information is regulated at both the federal and the state level. Click here to read more about privacy regulations.
- Studio Montage Salon & Spa in downtown Great Falls says that two of its employees tested positive for COVID-19; click here for details.
- The Missoula City-County Board of Health approved a rule that requires people over the age of 12 to wear face masks in most indoor public settings; click here to read more.
Health officials reported 127 new COVID-19 cases across Montana on Friday morning, according to the Montana Response COVID-19 tracking map, and two new deaths.
Note: official numbers reported by the state occasionally differ from those reported by county public health departments due to periodic lag times in reporting data to the state. The numbers below are from the Montana Department of Public Health & Human Services:
- TOTAL CASES & RECOVERIES: There have now been 1,593 cumulative cases statewide, and 855 people have recovered from the virus.
- HOSPITALIZATIONS: There have been 123 hospitalizations due to COVID-19 since the pandemic began; there are currently 21 patients hospitalized.
- ACTIVE CASES: The state reports there are currently 710 COVID-19 cases in Montana, up 65 from Thursday.
- TESTING: The number of tests increased by 3,413 over the previous 24-hour reporting period, for a new cumulative state-wide total of 112,178.
- DEATHS: The cumulative number of deaths in Montana is now 28. Two deaths were reported on Friday; the location of those deaths has not yet been disclosed. Three deaths were reported in Yellowstone County on Thursday, July 9th. Big Horn County reported on Thursday, July 2nd, that a woman in her 60s passed away in a hospital due to COVID-19. There have been six deaths in Toole County, four in Yellowstone County, four in Big Horn County, two in Cascade County, and two in Flathead County. The other deaths have been reported in Gallatin, Lincoln, Madison, and Missoula counties. Prior to Thursday, the most recent death was reported on June 26th.