More Than 2 Dozen Cases of COVID Confirmed in Weekend Tests in Montana

The second phase of reopening the state's economy began Monday

By Associated Press

HELENA — More than two dozen cases of COVID-19 were confirmed in tests run Friday through Sunday in Montana, as the second phase of reopening the state’s economy began Monday.

Three gates to Yellowstone National Park opened Monday morning, two weeks after Wyoming’s gates re-opened. Also under the second phase, bars, restaurants, fitness centers and pools can increase their capacity to 75% if they can keep social distancing guidelines and bowling alleys can open with reduced capacity. A 14-day quarantine for out-of-state visitors has been lifted.

People who are older than 65 or with underlying health conditions are encouraged to stay home as much as possible and companies are encouraged to have people continue to work from home.

The 26 new cases include 12 in Big Horn County, where they conducted surveillance testing; 10 in Yellowstone County, with eight connected to the women’s jail; and one in Ravalli County. It now has 41 active cases, including 22 in Big Horn County and 12 in Yellowstone County. More than 2,100 tests were processed Friday through Monday.

Ravalli County, which had an outbreak of eight cases starting on May 17, currently has just one known active case, officials said. Two people statewide were hospitalized with the respiratory virus on Monday and 17 people have died.

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