Apparent community spread In Gallatin

Sam Klomhaus — Enterprise Staff Writer
Monday, March 23, 2020

Four new coronavirus cases in Gallatin County have indicated the presence of community spread, according to the Gallatin-City County Health Department, or GCCHD.

Community spread means the source of the infection is unknown or can’t be traced to a known exposure, according to the GCCHD press release.

Gallatin County has a total of 10 confirmed cases. There are 34 cases statewide. Six cases, the second highest in the state, are being reported in Yellowstone County. There are no confirmed cases in Park County.

“We understand that this may be concerning to hear and we anticipated this day would come,” GCCHD   Health Officer Matt Kelley said in the release. “We stress again that now is the time to take strong action, and this underlines the importance of the restrictions and closures GCCHD and the governor have put into place to limit the spread of this disease.”

All patients in Gallatin County have had mild symptoms and have been isolated, the release said, and the Gallatin County communicable disease team has been in touch with all the cases.

To limit the spread of the virus, the release advised people to limit contact with other groups of people, stay home whenever possible, self-isolate when sick, wash hands and disinfect surfaces frequently, work from home if possible and self-quarantine for 14 days if recently returned from international travel.

One of the primary goals is to limit the number of new cases, Kelley said in the release, so as not to overwhelm medical resources.