COVID-19 cases (Friday 4-17-2020)

Posted at 9:48 AM, Apr 17, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-17 11:55:37-04

According to the Montana Response COVID-19 tracking map, Montana confirms 422 cases of COVID-19 as of Friday morning.

Montana added 7 new cases since Thursday's report.

Gallatin County reports 142 cases, more than any other county in the state. One new case was reported on Friday morning in Gallatin County.

Toole, Roosevelt, Gallatin and Missoula counties all added new cases.

According to the state, 233 people have recovered and 21 Montanans are currently hospitalized. There were 308 new tests conducted, brining the total test numbers up to 10,244.

Public health officials in Shelby said on Thursday afternoon that a fourth person has died due to COVID-19 in Toole County, bringing the state total to eight.

The Toole County Health Department said in a news release: "It is with deeply saddened and heavy hearts that we report an additional death in our community due to COVID-19. Our condolences continue to be with all families that have been affected by COVID-19."

Toole County has been hit hard by COVID-19, with 26 confirmed cases among a population of about 4,900; Shelby, the county seat, has about 3,200 people.

All Toole County cases continue to consist of close contact, healthcare-related transmission. Marias Medical Center in Shelby said on March 26that one of the residents of the Marias Heritage Center tested positive for COVID-19. Marias Heritage Center is a 38-apartment, state-licensed facility in Shelby. The next day, they said that some of the positive COVID-19 tests are from Marias Heritage Center employees. They also said: "This situation also exposed others to COVID-19 and, as such, we expect there could be other positives."

The official COVID-19 website for Montana is now being updated just once per day, rather than twice. Updates are scheduled to post at about 10 a.m. every day. Another change is that the website now includes the number of recovered COVID-19 patients in Montana.

Total Confirmed Cases and New Daily Cases by County

Toole County
29 Total Cases | 3 New Cases

Roosevelt County
6 Total Cases | 2 New Cases

Gallatin County
142 Total Cases | 1 New Cases

Missoula County
34 Total Cases | 1 New Cases

Beaverhead County
1 Total Cases | 0 New Cases

Big Horn County
3 Total Cases | 0 New Cases

Broadwater County
4 Total Cases | 0 New Cases

Carbon County
6 Total Cases | 0 New Cases

Cascade County
13 Total Cases | 0 New Cases

Deer Lodge County
3 Total Cases | 0 New Cases

Flathead County
37 Total Cases | 0 New Cases

Glacier County
4 Total Cases | 0 New Cases

Golden Valley County
3 Total Cases | 0 New Cases

Hill County
1 Total Cases | 0 New Cases

Jefferson County
2 Total Cases | 0 New Cases

Lake County
5 Total Cases | 0 New Cases

Lewis and Clark County
16 Total Cases | 0 New Cases

Liberty County
1 Total Cases | 0 New Cases

Lincoln County
7 Total Cases | 0 New Cases

Madison County
8 Total Cases | 0 New Cases

Meagher County
1 Total Cases | 0 New Cases

Musselshell County
1 Total Cases | 0 New Cases

Park County
7 Total Cases | 0 New Cases

Pondera County
1 Total Cases | 0 New Cases

Ravalli County
5 Total Cases | 0 New Cases

Richland County
3 Total Cases | 0 New Cases

Silver Bow County
11 Total Cases | 0 New Cases

Stillwater County
1 Total Cases | 0 New Cases

Yellowstone County
67 Total Cases

(These numbers may be adjusted as more counties report final reports to the state.)



In a press conference Tuesday, Gov. Steve Bullock announced he is extending his stay-at-home order, issued in response to the global coronavirus pandemic, through Friday, April 24.

Other directives issued by the Governor were also extended through April 24, including the closure of schools; the closures of bars, casinos and other nonessential businesses; prohibited dine-in service for restaurants; and the suspension of evictions, foreclosures and the shutting off of utilities for nonpayment.

“We know that staying home will help to flatten the curve. For every person we take out of the chain of transmission of this virus, the more likely our health care facilities can handle the capacity to respond, and the more likely we can beat back this virus sooner rather than later,” Bullock said.

The official COVID-19 website for Montana will be updated just once per day, rather than twice. Updates will be posted at about 10 a.m. every day. Another change is that the website now includes the number of recovered COVID-19 patients in Montana.

Bullock announces emergency rental assistance for families hit hardest by COVID-19

On Monday, Gov. Steve Bullock added to his previous directive that temporarily suspends certain evictions, foreclosures and service disconnections in Montana by creating a program to provide rental assistance to households experiencing substantial financial hardship due to COVID-19.

Stimulus payments: what you should know

The Economic Impact Payments (often referred to as "stimulus checks") are starting to show up in bank accounts for many people, and there are several questions and concerns that some people have.

Several weeks ago, Congress passed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, which included individual stimulus checks for more than 100 million Americans. Now, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has announced 50 to 70 million people should expect their money this week.
Two of the most common questions we have received: will my stimulus money be taxed, and will the amount be taken out of my tax refund next year? The answer to those concerns are not easily found (if they are even available yet in plain-language) on the IRS website, so we checked with other sources to find out.

According to , the stimulus payments are not considered taxable income, and are not "advances" on next year's tax refunds:

  • Will this eat into my tax refund for 2020? No. The ‘advance’ you’ve been hearing about is in reference to a special tax credit that’ll appear on the tax return you file in 2021 for the 2020 tax year — a tax credit that wouldn’t have been there if it wasn’t for these stimulus checks. So the Internal Revenue Service isn’t giving you some of your 2020 tax refund upfront. The stimulus check will be in addition to what you would’ve otherwise expected.
  • Will it count towards my taxable income for 2020? No. This money is not considered income. It won’t be taxable and it won’t affect your income tax bracket for 2020. offers the same information:

  • Myth 1: "The stimulus checks are taxed." The stimulus checks are not taxable income. The checks — which are worth $1,200 for individuals earning up to $75,000 and $2,400 for couples earning up to $150,000, plus $500 for dependents under 17 — are structured as refundable tax credits. That is why even people who do not typically file tax returns qualify for these payments, according to the Tax Foundation, an independent think tank.
  • Myth 2: "I will have to pay back the stimulus check next tax season." Assuming all of the information on your tax returns is correct, you will not repay the check next spring.

And from "The good news about your stimulus check is that’s tax-free. You will not owe income taxes on your stimulus check."

President Trump announces guidelines for reopening state economies

President Trump on Thursday announced that the White House's guidelines for beginning to reopen the country, something he said was reached with input from medical experts and scientists. CBS News previously obtained the guidelines, an 18-page document that puts much of the onus for testing, tracing and making decisions on governors.

"We are not opening all at once, but one, careful step at a time," Mr. Trump said, adding that states will reopen their economies at different times.

On a call with governors Thursday afternoon, the president told them, "You're gonna call your own shots." The plan calls for higher-risk populations — older Americans and those with certain underlying health conditions — to remain sheltering in place for the foreseeable future, while some Americans might begin to return to work. Governors ultimately have the authority to decide when to lift or continue their shelter-in-place and other mitigation measures.


Report: "Interim Analysis of COVID-19 cases in Montana"
Legislative leaders ask Bullock to reconsider some restrictions
Determining how many people have recovered
IRS deposits first wave of stimulus checks into bank accounts
COVID-19 update for Cascade County (Saturday, April 11)
Great Falls Job Service provides update on unemployment assistance
OPI recommends closing for remainder of school year
COVID-19: Q&A with a Great Falls physician
Toole County provides update on COVID-19 (Thursday, April 9)
Officials highlight recoveries of two COVID-19 patients in Montana