Three more Yellowstone County residents have died of COVID-19-related illnesses, bringing the county's death toll to 349 since the start of the pandemic, RiverStone Health reported Wednesday.
The three were a woman in her 80s, a man in his 80s and a woman in her 90s. All three died Tuesday, were fully vaccinated and had underlying conditions, according to RiverStone.
Statewide, COVID-19 has taken the lives of 2,109 Montanans, according to the Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services website.
On Wednesday, DPHHS reported that 510 COVID-19 patients were hospitalized statewide. One hundred forty-two of those patients were in Billings Clinic or St. Vincent Healthcare. The two Billings hospitals were caring for 119 COVID-19 patients who weren’t vaccinated. Forty-three of the Billings hospitals’ COVID-19 patients were in ICU and 31 were on ventilators.
Among the 12,160 Montanans currently infected with COVID-19 virus, 3,075 are Yellowstone County residents. Our county has far more COVID-19 cases, more hospitalizations and more resident deaths than any other Montana county.
Last week, Yellowstone County reported an average of 110 new COVID-19 cases per day per 100,000 population. That was an increase over 99 cases the previous week. Any number over 25 cases per day per 100,000 population is considered a high risk for community transmission of the virus. Yellowstone County has been in the high-risk-of-transmission zone since the third week of August.
Safe COVID-19 vaccines that reduce the risk of infection, illness and death are available to everyone age 12 and older from local pharmacies, clinics and hospitals.
RiverStone Health will hold these free, walk-in COVID-19 vaccine clinics:
· Thursday, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., RiverStone Health, 123 S. 27th St., in the four-story building.
· Oct. 19, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., City College, Tech Building, Room A017.
· Oct. 20, noon to 2 p.m. Billings Public Library Community Room.
· Oct. 21, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., North Park.
· Oct. 22, 11 am. to 1 p.m., Terry Park.
· Oct. 27, noon to 2 p.m., Billings Public Library Community Room.
Clinics listed above will offer first and second doses and booster shots of Pfizer vaccine, along with first and second doses of Moderna and the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine to people 18 and older. Third doses of Moderna and Pfizer vaccines are available to immune-compromised people.
A limited number of vaccination appointments are available from the RiverStone Health Immunization Clinic, phone 406.247.3382. More vaccination information is posted at covid.riverstonehealth.org.