GREAT FALLS - Officials at Malmstrom Air Force Base have again increased public health measures to curb the spread of COVID-19 (coronavirus).
A news release from Malmstrom says that the base raised its Health Protection Condition (HPCON) to Charlie from Bravo on March 25 in accordance with a Secretary of the Air Force directive designed to "more actively combat the spread of COVID-19 across the Department of the Air Force and our local communities."
The HPCON Charlie designation indicates a "substantial health threat" which requires heightened measures such as stricter guidelines on social distancing and shelter-in-place procedures with the following exceptions: obtaining food, caring for a relative or family member, seeking necessary health care, or going to an essential job.
To limit the risks associated with COVID-19, Malmstrom AFB is implementing further measures to reduce the spread of the virus. They include the following:
- Child Development Center/Youth Center will close at the end of the day on March 26.
- Scheduled youth programs have been canceled.
- Commissary/Exchange may enact metering/limiting the number of customers in the store. They may also begin designating hours specifically for non-active duty members.
- Other measures and closures are being considered, but have not been implemented yet.
Colonel Jennifer Reeves, the commander of the 341st Missile Wing at Malmstrom, said, "We are taking proactive steps to encourage all our Air Force members and families to follow Force Health Protection and CDC guidance to avoid contracting or spreading respiratory illnesses like the flu or COVID-19. We are also taking steps to educate and safeguard our military and civilian personnel, family members and base communities in preventing wide spread outbreak.”
Malmstrom leaders will host a virtual town hall on Facebook at 5 pm today; click here to visit the Facebook page .
As of Thursday morning (March 26), there are 71 cases of COVID-19 (coronavirus) in Montana, an increase of 18 since Wednesday morning. The new total includes cases reported on Wednesday in the following counties: Hill, Glacier, Lincoln, and Cascade; click here for details . There are no confirmed cases at Malmstrom.