BILLINGS - Yellowstone County health officials said a recent review of state health records has revealed an additional 15 deaths due to COVID-19.
In a press release issued Tuesday, RiverStone Health said the deaths occurred between Sept. 22 and Dec. 3 but were not reported to the local health department until last week.
"After reviewing more than 300 case reports the Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services sent last week, RiverStone Health has determined that 15 of those cases involved deaths that had not been previously reported to the public," the press release states.
Including these additional 15 deaths, 144 Yellowstone County people have died of COVID-19 illness, the agency said.
The newly reported deaths involved residents who all died in hospitals. Some had been living in local nursing homes and assisted living facilities. Others had been living in private homes. The victims include:
· A woman in her 80s who died on September 22.
· A woman in her 80s who died on September 23.
· A man in his 50s who died on October 8.
· A woman in her 70s who died on October 13.
· A man in his 60s who died on October 24.
· A woman in her 70s who died on October 29.
· A woman in her 80s who died on October 30.
· A man in his 90s who died on November 5.
· A man in his 60s who died on November 8.
· A woman in her 90s who died on November 17.
· A woman in her 80s who died on November 28.
· A woman in her 70s who died on November 28.
· A man in his 80s who died on December 1.
· A man in his 80s who died on December 2.
· A woman in her 80s who died on December 3.
“The loss of life in this pandemic is terrible and shocking,” said John Felton, Yellowstone County public health officer and RiverStone Health CEO. “Our hearts go out to all the families, friends and coworkers of our Yellowstone County neighbors who have died.”
The Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services online map indicates 145 deaths have occurred in Yellowstone County as of Dec. 15. Local health officials said they are working with DPHHS to reconcile that discrepancy.