(RiverStone Health Press Release)
BILLINGS - Eleven Yellowstone County residents have died of COVID-19 so far in August, making this month the deadliest since February, RiverStone Health reported on Tuesday. Our county has lost 296 residents to the pandemic since April 2020.
The most recent victim, a woman in her 60s, died on Sunday, Aug. 29, at a Billings hospital. She had not been vaccinated and had underlying health conditions.
“My heart goes out to this Yellowstone County woman’s loved ones,” said John Felton, Yellowstone County health officer and RiverStone Health CEO and president. “Tragic as this August has been, COVID-19 took even more Yellowstone County lives – 17 – in August of 2020. The major difference with COVID-19 healthcare this year is that we now have safe, effective vaccines to prevent serious illness and death.”
Today, Billings Clinic and St. Vincent Healthcare together are treating 70 inpatients for COVID-19 illness, including 60 who aren’t vaccinated. The COVID-19 patients in Billings hospitals are seriously ill with 22 in ICU and 14 on ventilators.
If you haven’t yet been vaccinated, please talk to your healthcare provider for advice on vaccination.
The Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine received full, regular Food and Drug Administration approval last week. The Pfizer vaccine, along with the Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccines have been given to millions of Americans and have been proven safe and highly effective in preventing serious COVID-19 illness.
COVID-19 vaccines are available at Billings pharmacies, clinics and hospitals.
RiverStone Health is offering first and second doses of Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine to everyone age 12 and older. The two-dose Moderna vaccine is available to people age 18 and older as is the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine. RiverStone Health has scheduled these free, walk-in clinics:
· Thursday, Sept. 2, 11 a.m. – 1 p.m., RiverStone Health, 123 S. 27th, in the Lil Anderson Center (four-story building).
· Sept. 23, 11 a.m. – 1 p.m., RiverStone Health, in the four-story building.
Individuals may also make appointments for COVID-19 vaccination with the RiverStone Health Immunization Clinic. Call 247-3382.
Third doses for immune-compromised people are given only at the walk-in clinics, not by appointment. Immune-compromised people may also contact their primary care provider about getting a third COVID-19 vaccination.
More vaccination information is posted at covid.riverstonehealth.org.