HELENA – Nearly half of Montana’s confirmed COVID-19 cases were reported in September as the state continues to see record numbers of cases.
The state reported 429 coronavirus cases on Thursday, the highest daily total by a margin of 81 cases.
Just over 6,000 of the state’s 13,500 known cases of COVID-19, or 44% were reported in September.
The case numbers are thought to be much higher because not everyone has been tested, and studies show people can have COVID-19 without having symptoms.
The state has reported a total of 181 coronavirus-related deaths. There are currently 178 people hospitalized with the respiratory virus.
For most people, the coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia, and death.
As the virus spreads in the state, applications for unemployment assistance were on the decline last week, according to new figures from the U.S. Employment and Training Administration released Thursday.
The number of applications submitted in Montana during the week ending on Sept. 26 fell to 3,084, a decrease of 4.3% from the number of applications submitted the previous week.
The number is still more than three times greater than number submitted the same week last year.
Since March 14, the state has processed more than 154,000 unemployment claims. That represents a third of the total workforce of Montana that is eligible for the unemployment insurance program.
As of Sept. 19, 19,400 people in Montana were receiving unemployment benefits, or 4.2% of all eligible employees in the state.
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