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Report: Yellowstone County near hospital capacity as COVID cases rise

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Posted at 6:41 PM, Oct 08, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-08 21:03:53-04

In Yellowstone County, one of Montana's top COVID-19 hotspots, hospital beds are 90 percent full, space in intensive care units is tightening and ventilator supply is ample, according to a new state report.

The Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services released its first report Thursday on capacity levels in hospitals statewide, as Gov. Steve Bullock ordered earlier this week.

Statewide, Montana has 1,051 hospital beds available, about 38 percent of 2,764 total beds in the state. Of the hospital beds occupied, 247 patients are for COVID patients, while the remaining 1,466 are for all other patients.

The map below shows the occupancy rates of hospitals across Montana. The higher the number, the fewer beds are available for new patients:

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Percentage of hospital beds available in counties in Montana. Oct. 8, 2020.

At Billings Clinic, 53 in-patient beds are available of the total 316 beds. The hospital has 53 COVID patients and 220 patients suffering from something else.

The state does not list any available in-patient beds for St. Vincent Healthcare. A hospital spokeswoman said some beds are available, but the hospital is around 90 percent capacity. St. Vincent has 45 COVID patients and 172 patients suffering from something else.

A total of six ICUs are available, all at St. Vincent, according to the state.

The two hospitals have 73 ventilators available, with 52 at Billings Clinic and 21 at St. Vincent. Each hospital has eight COVID patients on ventilators.

Yellowstone County has 1,225 active COVID-19 cases, the most in the state. The county has 3,895 confirmed cases since the start of the pandemic, and 2,600 have recovered. Seventy people have died.

Click here to see the full report for the state.