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Spike in COVID cases, deaths continue across Montana with another record day

Day to day COVID-19 cases reported in Montana. (Montana Department of Health and Human Services)

Montana raced past the century mark in the number of new COVID-19 cases reported in a single day on Friday, setting another record for the third time this week.

State health officials also reported three more deaths, including the first in Ravalli County. Public health officials there said a woman in her 90s passed away on Friday morning.

“Public Health wishes to extend our deepest regrets to the family,” a social media post states.

The number of cornavirus cases reported across the state hit a new record high on Friday with 127 cases. That outpaced the previous record high of 96 set the day before.

Yellowstone and Gallatin counties accounted for most of the new cases on Friday, with Yellowstone County reporting 54 and Gallatin County reporting 39. Neither county has issued a mandatory face mask order.

Missoula and Big Horn counties are the only two in the state to have mandated face masks thus far.

Statewide, 28 people have died from the virus and 21 are currently being hospitalized. The state has reported a total of 1,593 cases and said 710 are still active.

The two other deaths reported Friday include residents of the Canyon Creek Memory Care center in Billings, where several other residents have died this week due to coronavirus.

“The gravity of the COVID-19 pandemic cannot be underestimated, especially for our high-risk loved ones and neighbors,” Gov. Steve Bullock said Friday. “I know that these losses weigh heavily on us as Montanans and I ask that we commit to protecting the vulnerable in our communities from this deadly virus.”