After more than a month with no new COVID-19 cases, the Ravalli County COVID-19 Incident Management Team reported on May 17, 2020 at 11:30 a.m. that the results of a ‘rapid test’ from a person in Ravalli County having COVID-19 symptoms, were positive. In the meantime, the 50 to 60 year old male is in isolation. Identified contacts are in quarantine. On Monday, Public Health Nurse Karyn Johnston confirmed that the sixth positive case in Ravalli County had tested positive initially, but they were waiting on results from the state laboratory in Helena for final confirmation.
Johnston said that the case was being considered a case of travel infection and that it was not a case of community infection.
She said they were just getting started on the contact tracing to see who the man has been in contact with. “That’s when our work really starts,” she said. Right now, she said, they had about 30 people they need to contact. She said she would have three nurses working on it immediately and there were already other follow-up tests that are at the lab already.
Johnston said, “The man was not in touch with people in grocery stores or anything like that. It was just all people that he works with.”
On Monday afternoon, Ravalli County Public Health officials received confirmation of the positive results from the State Lab. Additionally, results from nine tests related to this incident are pending.
As of Monday evening, May 18, there have been 470 total confirmed cases of COVID-19 throughout Montana. Of those, 64 required hospitalization and 434 have recovered. 20 cases remain active, with four current hospitalizations. There have been 16 deaths.
Gallatin County had the highest number of cases in the state, with 149. Yellowstone County was next with 86. Both counties currently have zero cases. Across the state there are only 2 new cases in all counties reporting as of Monday.
A total of 28,167 tests have been administered across the state.