Montana Public Radio

vaccines

Courtesy of the Mansfield Center

On February 17, 2021, the University of Montana's Mansfield Center hosted Dr. Anthony Fauci for the 2021 Mansfield Lecture, presenting a dialogue between the preeminent American public health figure and several Montanans, including moderator Rob Saldin of the Mansfield Center. Listen to Dr. Fauci's take on Covid-19, vaccine distribution and vaccine hesitancy in Montana, lessons to be learned from this pandemic, and how and when we'll recognize that we've returned to a version of "normal."

The Montana House Thursday voted down two bills that propose loosening vaccine requirements and endorsed a third.

House Bill 415 would’ve prevented state agencies from refusing service to those who are unvaccinated and would’ve banned employers from requiring vaccination as a job requirement. Sponsor and Manhattan Republican Rep. Jennifer Carlson said the proposal addresses a constitutional rights issue.

NIAID Director Anthony S. Fauci, M.D.
NIAID

An estimated 6,000 people spent their lunch hour with Dr. Anthony Fauci on Wednesday. Fauci, the nation’s leading infectious disease specialist, headlined a noontime online lecture [full audio] hosted by the University of Montana’s Maureen and Mike Mansfield Center.

A gloved hand swabs a person's arm, prepping it for a shot.
iStock

Montana lawmakers are considering bills to expand who is eligible for vaccine-mandate exemptions in workplaces and schools.

Results released Friday from Montana State University’s pre-election poll show Montanans across all party affiliations are feeling more uncertain about the safety of a potential COVID-19 vaccine.

 

Protests against how the state and federal government is handling coronavirus have surged across the country and in Montana. Most recently, animal rights protestors gathered outside Rocky Mountain Labs in Hamilton where scientists are hard at work on a vaccine. But public opposition to scientific efforts has a long history in Montana. 

Vaccination
CDC/ Judy Schmidt

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say the number of vaccines being given to children for diseases like polio and hepatitis B has fallen dramatically during the coronavirus pandemic.

Montana’s public health departments and providers, seeing the same decline, are concerned it could lead to an outbreak of a vaccine preventable disease and pull resources away from the COVID-19 response.

Pertussis cases by Montana county, 05-05-19
Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services

There are more than 170 reported cases of whooping cough in Montana. State health officials say local outbreaks in parts of western Montana are driving the recent uptick.

The Department of Public Health and Human Services (DPHHS) reports recent outbreaks of whooping cough in Missoula, Flathead and Lake counties.

Pertussis progression.
Centers For Disease Control (PD)

Missoula County health officials are investigating an outbreak of whooping cough that has sickened at least six Missoulians. Local health officials have identified hundreds more who may have been exposed to the contagious respiratory disease.

'Capitol Talk' is MTPR's weekly legislative analysis program.
Montana Public Radio

Tonight on Capitol Talk: Bills that are still alive, and bills that are gone at the midway point of the session. The effectiveness - and downside - of arguing "religious freedom" to get a bill passed. And the congressional delegation's tepid reaction to former Trump attorney Michael Cohen's testimony.

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