With schools resuming and many large events being scheduled in the coming weeks, Ravalli County Public Health is expecting a "secondary COVID spike" in the valley. The county is already seeing a rise in positive COVID-19 tests. The Friday report from the Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services showed 14 new positive tests in the county. The cases were spread throughout the age categories from young to old.

In a news release this week from Dr. Carol Calderwood, the Public Health Officer, it was noted that there is "partial community immunity, better testing and treatments, and lower percentages of serious illness and death. Our medical facilities have extremely solid plans in place."

The Board of Health issued recommendations for the public:

  • Everyone wash their hands often.
  • If an employee, teacher or student is sick, stay home.
  • It is the personal choice of parents, students, teachers and employees to wear a mask or not.
  • Encourage tolerance and respect of personal choices.

Ravalli County Public Health also asked schools and employers to expect increased unplanned absences in the near future. They also assured the public that the department will follow up on cases and troubleshoot issues as they have been doing. From the news release: "We ask each person to do as much as they each can to limit spread of communicable diseases this fall and winter."

Of course, there have been nationwide calls for continued movement for more COVID-19 vaccinations. Inoculations are readily available throughout the county. There is also a national campaign to make sure children get their normal immunizations to protect them from a number of other diseases.

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