The increase in COVID continues and has an impact on local schools

Rocky Boy Schools announced Sunday that due to COVID-19 cases confirmed in people associated with the district that it was starting remote learning Monday running through Sept. 23.

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  • And the surge continues to impact communities including, as it has from the start, local schools.

  • That comes as Hays-Lodge Pole Schools returned to in-class learning Monday after going remote last week.

Chester-Joplin-Inverness Schools, which delayed its opening day from Aug. 25 to Aug. 31 due to COVID-19, announced on its Facebook page Sunday that grades seven through 12 were going to virtual learning from Monday through Friday this week.

The announcements come as cases ramp up in the state. The state tracking map update this morning reported 1,249 new cases were confirmed in Montana, with 6,756 active cases and 362 active hospitalizations.

Havre Public Schools has not announced any plans to go to remote learning, but new cases keep coming into the district. A release Monday morning reported nine new cases were confirmed over the weekend and a release Monday afternoon reported two more cases were confirmed.

From the start of the pandemic in Montana in March 2020, the state has confirmed 136,175 cases and suffered 1,874 COVID-19-related deaths.

Locally, Hill County reported 63 new cases confirmed from Saturday through Monday, bringing the total of active cases to 137 with seven active hospitalizations. The county has had 49 deaths.

Blaine County reported being notified of 28 new cases from Friday through Monday, bringing its total of active cases to 66 with no active hospitalizations listed. It has had 24 deaths. Liberty County Public Health reported Monday that 12 new cases were confirmed in the previous 72 hours with 15 active cases. It has suffered one COVID-19-related death.

The state tracking map this morning listed Chouteau County with four new cases, 16 active and seven deaths. Public health officials are urging people to use strategies to avoid catching COVID-19 and reduce its spread, primarily by being vaccinated. People also are urged to to stay home if they don’t feel well, regularly wash their hands for at least 20 seconds with soap or with a hand sanitizer including at least 60 percent alcohol, regularly wash and sanitize surfaces, and wear a mask when in indoor public spaces.

In Hill County, vaccinations are available through Bullhook Community Health Center, 406-395-4305; the Hill County Health Department, 406-400-2415; Northern Montana Health Care’s Specialty Medical Center at 406-265-7831 or it’s family Family Medical Center at 406-265-5408; Western Drug Pharmacy, 406-265-9601; Gary & Leo’s Pharmacy, which takes walk-ins; Walmart; and the Rocky Boy Health Center, 406-395-1655. Vaccinations are available in Blaine County through Blaine County Health Department, 406-357-2345, and Fort Belknap Health Center, 406-353-3219.

People can call Liberty County Health Department at 406-759-5517 to schedule a vaccination. Vaccine is available in Chouteau County at the Chouteau County Health Department, 406-622-3771, and Big Sandy Pharmacy at 406-378-5588.

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