Reported Sanders County COVID-19 case false positive

Posted at 7:34 AM, Jul 08, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-08 10:28:05-04

SANDERS COUNTY — The Clark Fork Valley Hospital president reports the first COVID-19 case in Sanders County reported Monday was a false positive.

In a Facebook post, Dr. Gregory Hanson said they had a positive case but was awaiting confirmation testing from the Montana state lab in Helena.

The hospital received notice Tuesday from the state health department that it was a "false positive," meaning it's not a confirmed case.

Here's the full statement:

Clark Fork Valley Hospital
Preliminary Positive Covid Test was False Positive

CFVH Covid-19 Update - 7/7/20

As I indicted yesterday we had a positive test result for Covid-19 and that we were awaiting confirmatory testing from the Montana State Lab. All testing has an inherent inaccuracy with both inaccurate positive and negative rates. The most accurate testing available is through the Montana State Lab so it is used to confirm results in cases like ours. We received notice this afternoon that Covid-19 was not found in the specimen we asked for confirmation on. Our test result will be considered a “false positive” and as such Sanders County will continue to show on maps as not having a confirmed case.

A great deal of conversation in social media occurred as a result of the result we had. Out of all of it what is most important for us to keep in mind is that the practices we have instituted remain the bedrock of our societies attempt to limit the impact of Covid-19. Wash hands, cough into elbows, social distancing, wearing of masks, and stay home if you’re sick. These will continue to be effective efforts to keep our most vulnerable loved ones safe.

It is still more likely than not that we will see Covid-19 in Sanders County, but our individual efforts can go a long ways to limit the negative impact it will have.

Gregory S. Hanson, MDPresident/CEOClark Fork Valley Hospital