March 30 update: New presumptive positive in Cascade County, unconfirmed; Bullock orders quarantine for incoming travelers; 4 COVID-19 deaths in Montana; 177 cases statewide; county clerk and recorder’s office by appointment only; municipal court changes

Cascade County City-County Health Department

There’s a new presumptive positive case, a male in his 80s, in Cascade County tonight.

“The individual is isolated. Our infectious disease team is conducting a contact investigation, and will identify and reach out to anyone who may have been exposed. Since this case has not yet been confirmed by the state lab, Cascade County will still show as having seven confirmed cases as of 5:45 p.m. this evening,” according to Cascade County City-County Health Department.

The CDC has alerted health departments nationwide to the fact that two people recently used non-pharmaceutical chloroquine phosphate in an attempt to prevent COVID-19. One of those individuals died shortly after arriving at the hospital, and the second has survived but with critical gastrointestinal distress and cardiac abnormalities, according to CCHD.

The chloroquine phosphate they used was from a chemical for fish aquariums, labeled on the container as being “for ornamental fish use only.”

Pharmaceutical versions of chloroquine, when prescribed, can be used to treat malaria, lupus, and arthritis, and it’s being studied to see whether it could be used to treat COVID-19.

“However, if someone uses too much chloroquine or uses it inappropriately, it can lead to multiple cardiac conditions, seizures, coma, or even death. And it is a drug with a very narrow therapeutic index, which means that it can be toxic even when the dose is only slightly too high,” according to CCHD. “Chloroquine is only safe when a version intended for human consumption is used, and only when used as prescribed.”

At this point, there is no medication that has been shown to prevent COVID-19 and treatment of COVID-19 consists of treating its symptoms, according to CCHD.

Trisha Gardner said in a March 30 video on the CCHD Facebook page that to prevent COVID-19, use the following prevention measures: “stay home, wash your hands, disinfect surfaces frequently, and keep six feet of distance between you and anyone who isn’t an immediate family member. If you are sick, isolate yourself even from your family.”

Bullock orders quarantine for inbound travelers

Gov. Steve Bullock today directed that travelers arriving from another state or country to Montana for non-work-related purposes undergo a 14-day self-quarantine.

“While we love our visitors, we would ask that you not come visit while Montanans are watching out for one another by staying at home,” Bullock said in a release. “This is important not only to protect our health care system, but also to protect against the spread of COVID-19. As of today, travel from another state or country is the most common known source of COVID-19 infections in Montana. I am asking anyone who is in Montana and has recently traveled from another state or country to do the right thing and self-quarantine for 14 days.”

March 27 COVID-19 updates: 7th case assigned to Cascade County; law enforcement offers more info on stay at home order; airport office closed, flights ongoing; library stops curbside; GFPD lobby closed; Benefis ask for N95 masks, other supplies; total of 121 cases in Montana now

The directive applies both to Montana residents and non-residents entering the state for non-work-related purposes. It requires a self-quarantine for 14 days, or the duration of a non-work trip to Montana—whichever is shorter. The directive also instructs the Montana Department of Commerce to advise vacation listing and rental sites that they must notify potential out-of-state renters about the quarantine requirement. Healthcare workers are excluded from the directive, according to a release.

March 26 COVID-19 updates: First Montanan dies of COVID-19; Cascade County has another confirmed case; Bullock issues shelter in place; county health officer closes tattoo parlors, salons, spas; Bus service suspended through April 11; Montana now has 90 cases

The directive authorizes the Montana National Guard to conduct temperature checks at Montana airports and rail stations and screen for potential exposure history for travelers arriving in Montana from another state or country.

The directive is effective now through April 10.

The full directive is here.

Cascade County

At the request of the Clerk and Recorder and in compliance with the state’s shelter-in-place mandate, the Cascade County Clerk and Recorders Office in the old Tribune building at 121 4th St. N. is going to appointment only beginning April 1.

GFPS board approves plans for closures; four substitute teachers laid off

The Clerk and Recorders Office will be closed to walk-in traffic and open by appointment only. County residents should call 454-6807 or 454-6808 to make an appointment or to inquire about services provided.

Clerk and Recorder, Rina Fontana-Moore said in a release, “Many of our services are available on-line or through the mail.  In the interest of following the governor’s directives and to protect our community from coronavirus transmission, we will close our doors to walk-in traffic beginning April 1.”

Bullock gives counties option to do June primary by mail due to COVID-19; Cascade County will do mail ballot

Title companies have already been notified and advised to record their titles using the e-recording system. This process has been in place for several years, is simple to use, and is no-cost to the companies. For those needing a birth or death certificate, they are asked to call ahead so the certificate copies can be processed in advance and ready for residents upon arrival to the office.

To receive birth or death certificates, bring a copy of your driver’s license and cash payment. Birth certificates cost $8 and death certificates cost $5 each.

March 25 COVID-19 updates: Two more cases confirmed in Cascade County; Malmstrom raises health protection level; airport operating normally, TSA Pre-check canceled; GFPS teacher parade; city mapping office closed to public; state up to 65 cases

The Elections office in the Courthouse Annex at 325 2nd Ave. N. will remain open to walk-in traffic to accept voter registrations and answer questions related to the upcoming elections. For information, call the Clerk and Recorder’s Office, 454-6807 or 454-6808.

Montana deaths related to COVID-19 rises to four

There have been four deaths of Montanans due to COVID-19, according to Gov. Steve Bullock’s office.

March 24 COVID-19 updates: School closures, dine-in restrictions extended to April 10; Catholic schools closed through May 4; election updates; county landfill changes; changes to GFPD operations, city animal shelter; GF Clinic now accepting homemade masks

This morning, he issued the following statement regarding the third and fourth deaths.

“Losing two more Montanans to COVID-19 is a blow to our statewide community. Today’s news is a heartbreaking reminder to us all that we must continue to do everything we can to slow the spread of this disease. Montanans in every corner of our state are keeping the family and friends of these Montanans in our hearts.”

Notification of the deaths was provided by the Toole County Health Department on March 30, according to the governor’s office.

March 23 COVID-19 update: Beer Week moved to September; city planning office closing to public; county goes to phase 3, significantly adjusting staffing; city commission affirms declaration of emergency and expanding city manager’s authority; free addiction counseling; Bullock issues directive on hospital capacity, medical supplies

“Bullock’s administration is aware of the concerns regarding impacts to the senior community in the county and has been working to deploy additional resources to the health care system,” according to the release.

On March 29, Bullock issued the following statement regarding the second COVID-19 death in Montana.

“I’m saddened to hear that a second Montanan has died from COVID-19. No matter in which community we live, the impact of each loss of life has a ripple effect all throughout the state and serves as a reminder of how serious this disease is. Our hearts go out to the family, friends, and community of this Montanan.”

Notification of the death was provided by the Madison County Public Health Department and confirmed by the Governor’s Coronavirus Task Force, according to the release.

Total cases in Montana

According to the Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services there are now 177 cases of COVID-19 across the state. One of those cases is counted in Montana though the woman was tested and remains in Maryland.

So far, according to DPHHS, a total of 4,411 tests have been completed as of March 30.

state tracking map shows the confirmed cases are as follows by county:

  • Cascade County: 7 cases
  • Gallatin County: 69 cases
  • Yellowstone County: 28 cases
  • Missoula County: 12 cases
  • Lewis and Clark County: 11 cases
  • Silver Bow County: 9 cases
  • Flathead County: 9 cases
  • Toole County: 6 cases
  • Madison County: 4 cases
  • Lincoln County: 4 cases
  • Broadwater County: 3 cases
  • Park County: 3 cases
  • Lake County: 3 cases
  • Deer Lodge County: 3 cases
  • Jefferson County: 2 cases
  • Ravalli County: 1 case
  • Roosevelt County: 1 case
  • Hill County: 1 case
  • Meagher County: 1 case

Municipal Court update

Beginning March 30, walk-ins are no longer available for filings, appearances and payment of fines. Municipal court staff is still working.

Filings can be filed a few different ways:

Payments

  • Online at citepayusa.com
  • Pay through mail

Open Court

There will be no open court appearances from March 30 to April 10th.

Appearances will resume on April 13, subject to change.

If you have bonded out and/or have been charged with a 45-5 violation, please call the court for further instruction.

Scheduled Hearings

All in person hearings between March 30 through April 10 will be continued. New notices will be sent via mail. If you are represented by counsel please contact your attorney as soon as possible to verify your court dates.

Temporary Restraining Orders

The court is open to receive orders; you must call 406-771-1380 and notify the court and we will give further instructions. Served orders must appear to the date and time stated on court papers. You must contact Victim Witness for a petition for temporary orders of protection and instructions of filing at 406-315-1111.Telephone

The court will be answering phone calls from 9 a.m. to noon and 1-4 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Jail Arraignments

Jail arraignments will be held via video conferences Monday at 1:30 p.m. and Tuesday through Friday at 9:30 a.m. The court will not be allowing walk-in viewings during this time.

Extensions Appear and Pay

You can ask for an extension through email or by phone.