Montana Public Radio

Rachel Cramer

Reporter

Rachel Cramer is a reporter for Yellowstone Public Radio

Many of us are adjusting to a new normal as we spend much more time inside our homes, rely on apps to see friends and family, and experience a heightened sense of uncertainty. Rachel Cramer with Yellowstone Public Radio spoke with a couple in Bozeman 10 days into their two-week self-quarantine to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus.

The number of COVID-19 cases continues to climb in Montana, but with limited test kits, not all patients with symptoms are tested and included in the state count.

 

Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks announced Mar. 30 that inspectors in Dillon intercepted three boats infested with invasive mussels since Mar. 16. FWP says news about the novel coronavirus caused a big spike in boat traffic as people returned home.


Many nonprofit organizations across Montana have canceled programs and postponed big spring fundraisers in an effort to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus. Participants in a recent survey say they’re concerned how the economic fallout from COVID-19 will affect them and the communities they serve. The new $2 trillion coronavirus response package could provide some relief.

Urban and rural hospitals in Montana are facing a severe financial crunch as they prepare for an uptick in patients with the COVID-19 illness. The economic stimulus plan approved by the U.S. Senate Wednesday night is expected to help.

Update 03/27/30 at 12:30 P.M.: U.S. Sen. Steve Daines's office said in a press release the five men from Bozeman were on a flight back to Montana with help from the American Embassy and General Consul in Dubai.

Five men from Bozeman are among 300 people stuck at the Dubai International Airport after all flights were cancelled indefinitely. The group of friends has spent a week and a half trying to return to the U.S. from a spring break trip to the Philippines. They and their families say they had zero luck using the U.S. State Department’s recommended services for travellers in emergency situations.

Bozeman Health says that within a month, it will be able to analyze COVID-19 swabs on site. The regional health giant says this could reduce the wait time for results to less than an hour.

Park and Gallatin County health officials are asking Yellowstone National Park to close immediately to prevent visitors from potentially spreading COVID-19 in gateway communities and overwhelming local health care facilities. 

 

Some book stores in Montana say they’re seeing higher sales as more people become homebound and public libraries close due to the novel coronavirus. 

On the heels of a third COVID-19 illness case announced out of Gallatin County Wednesday, the County and the city of Bozeman have declared states of emergency. Existing closures of bars and eateries and now gyms, theaters and other indoor recreational facilities, have been extended into April as part of an effort to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus.

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