COVID in Montana (Thursday December 17)

Posted at 11:26 AM, Dec 17, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-17 13:52:15-05

GREAT FALLS — There were 723 new COVID-19 cases reported in Montana on Thursday, and the statewide death toll has now reached 887, according to data compiled by MTN News during a 24-hour period. The most recent deaths were reported in Yellowstone County, Dawson County, Flathead County, Lewis & Clark County, and and Ravalli County.

There are currently 306 people hospitalized for treatment of the virus, and the cumulative number of hospitalizations is 3,199. The number of active COVID cases in the state is currently 8,893, according to MTN News, and there has been a cumulative total of 75,893 cases of the virus in Montana. Of the total cases, 66,113 have recovered. The number of tests performed in the state has reached 742,540, an increase of 6,481 during this 24-hour reporting period.

The counties with the most deaths to date are:

  • Big Horn: 58
  • Blaine: 22
  • Cascade: 91
  • Dawson: 22
  • Flathead: 51
  • Gallatin: 30
  • Glacier: 31
  • Hill: 33
  • Lewis & Clark: 29
  • Missoula: 45
  • Roosevelt: 51
  • Rosebud: 26
  • Silver Bow: 38
  • Yellowstone: 146

SOURCES: The numbers reported above reflect the latest data from the official Montana COVID website as well as supplemental data from county health departments. The disparity between numbers provided by the MT Department of Public Health & Human Services (DPHHS) and numbers from county health departments continues to grow as COVID cases escalate in Montana. MTN News uses both state data and county data to provide more accurate and timely information. As a result, numbers reported by MTN do not align with the DPHHS figures.

CONTEXT: Not every person who tests positive actually becomes ill or exhibits symptoms. Many do not; of those who do become sick, some experience mild symptoms and do not require hospitalization. Others experience more severe symptoms, and some do require hospitalization. Every person who tests positive for COVID, however, has the potential to spread the virus to other people, including family members and friends, which is why public health officials continue to encourage everyone to wear a mask and maintain at least the recommended six feet of "social distance" when in public. The CDC released data in late August which emphasizes that people with contributing or chronic medical conditions are at much greater risk of dying from COVID-19. Click here to read more.

On Wednesday afternoon, several people became the first to receive the COVID vaccine in Great Falls: