COVID 19 Incident Commander Cindy Farr provided Tuesday’s You Tube presentation from the Missoula City County Health Department and the message was loud and clear; wear a face mask.

Farr began with a breakdown of the current cases in Montana on a day that set a new record for positive cases of COVID 19.

“The state of Montana is reporting 1,327 cumulative COVID cases of which 588 are active with 80 new cases reported today, and yes, that is a new single day record of 80 cases in one day,” said Farr. “There are currently 22 hospitalizations across the state and a total of 23 deaths to date.”

Farr said the most important thing anyone can do to keep from spreading the virus is to wear a cloth face covering.

“Wear a cloth face covering in order to reduce asymptomatic spread,” she said. “Wash your hands thoroughly and frequently. Clean and sanitize frequently touched surfaces and wear a face covering. Did I say that twice? Yes, I did. It is extremely important that we take this measure. We have them here at the health department. Yes, it’s uncomfortable, but you get used to it. We wear them when we’re around other people here at the Health Department and we recommend that you do, too.”

Farr continued to press the point of wearing a face covering.

“We need to continue retraining our brains to incorporate safety practices and we need to continue working together holding one another accountable,” she said. “Here at the health department we remind each other to mask up for safety, especially in hallways and smaller meeting rooms where we can’t maintain social distancing between participants. This accountability check is given and received with respect, knowing that we’re all doing the best that we can in the places we are in order to move on in a safe manner.”

Farr summed up the proposal that will be presented to the County Board of Health in Thursday.

“The proposed draft mask rule would require all individuals 12 years and older to wear a cloth face covering when inside places that are open to the public,” she said. “There are a handful of exceptions to the rule including, but not limited to, when you’re eating or drinking or when you’re engaging in a strenuous physical activity in which wearing a face covering would be impractical or unsafe.”

Click this link to submit comments to the Board of Health about the proposed mask draft rule.