COVID cases on the rise in Montana

Cases of COVID-19 are on the rise again in Montana, a reminder that the pandemic is not over though for many life has gone back to the way it looked before the virus arrived.

The state health department reported Friday that cases in Montana rose 1,501 over the previous week, or an average of nearly 215 new cases added each day. The department started reporting cases weekly instead of every weekday about a month ago, citing lower case counts and less strain on hospitals.

The state also reported 23 new deaths since last Friday, though some of those deaths could have occurred earlier and just been counted now. A total of 3,423 Montanans have died from COVID-19.

Cases have been increasing over the past couple weeks. The week before last, the state Department of Public Health and Human Services reported 1,464 new cases, a 25% jump over the week prior, and 42 hospitalizations, a 17% increase. And the preceding week, Montana added 1,164 new cases, a 35% increase. Hospitalizations rose 33% that week.

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