The Missoula City County Health Department announced on Wednesday that it will be consolidating all of its COVID 19 services in one larger location early in 2022.

COVID 19 Incident Commander Cindy Farr provided details to KGVO News.

“Our lease actually expires at the Southgate Mall clinic and also at our Flynn Lane testing site at the same time at the end of December,” said Farr. “We've actually found a new location where we can house both the testing and vaccinations at the same place, and that location is actually when you turn off of Broadway onto Flynn Lane. It's right there on the corner of Flynn Lane and Broadway.”

As in other parts of the country, Farr said new COVID infections are dropping here in Missoula County.

“Here in Missoula County, we're seeing about 20 or fewer positive tests coming in per day, which means that we're definitely seeing a decrease in the amount of COVID in our county right now,” she said. “Our seven day average incidence rate is now at 15, which is excellent. We want to keep it under 25, so we're really happy that it staying under 25.”

The stock market surged over the past two days on news that the Omicron Variant is not as virulent as was expected, but Farr said more data is still coming in.

“We’re still waiting for some research to come out on that,” she said. “It is a little bit concerning that we're seeing big spikes of the Omicron Variant in places like Africa, and it has also popped up in a lot of locations here in the United States. But we're still waiting for some research to tell us if this is going to be a strong enough virus to over overtake the Delta Variant or if Delta will continue to be our predominant variant for COVID.”

Farr then provided the current vaccination numbers for Missoula County.

“Right now we've got 69.66 percent of our eligible population that has received at least one dose of the vaccine, and 60.54 percent of the total population is fully vaccinated,” she said. “So we're definitely seeing that number continue to go up pretty regularly right now. Obviously, our eligible population has increased now that we've got vaccinations available for the five to 11 year-olds, and we are seeing the percentage of five to 11 year-olds that have at least received one dose going up.”

Those hoping that the MCPS might be ready to relax its masking mandate should visit the MCPS website to see the criteria necessary to consider ending the mask mandate.

 

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