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Malmstrom Air Force Base reinstates indoor mask requirement

Malmstrom Air Force Base
Posted at 11:01 AM, Sep 07, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-07 15:21:26-04

GREAT FALLS — Malmstrom Air Force Base announced on Tuesday, September 7, 2021, that based on the increase in Montana and Cascade County’s COVID-19 case numbers and infection rate, and after consultation with the base’s Public Health Team, it has changed its health protection condition (HPCON) from Alpha to Bravo effective immediately.

As a result of the change, Malmstrom is implementing mandatory indoor mask wear for all personnel, regardless of vaccination status. All measures taken are to reduce the spread of COVID-19 among the base population and to ensure continuation of our no-fail mission.

A news release from Malmstrom says that raising the HPCON level to Bravo aligns base posture and efforts with those of local, state, and national health agencies regarding COVID-19.

HPCON B measures address a moderate health threat to base personnel due to a heightened exposure risk. The personal measures include avoiding high-risk areas and, if exposed, self-isolation.

Colonel Anita Feugate Opperman, the commander of the 341st Missile Wing at Malmstrom, said, “Our experience and our medical experts tell us that these health measures are the best way to maintain mission readiness by ensuring the availability of our personnel. We are continuing to monitor the data as it evolves, both locally and on base, so that we can make informed decisions that safeguard the health of our service members and their families.”

There were 1,223 new COVID cases reported over the last three days in Montana, with 6,366 active cases as of Tuesday, September 7, according to the Montana Department of Public Health & Human Services (DPHHS). Information from DPHHS at this point does not include data on whether new cases occurred among vaccinated or unvaccinated people.

There were three new deaths reported; the total number of Montanans who have died due to COVID is now 1,814, according to DPHHS.

The number of people currently hospitalized in Montana due to COVID is 274, up from 266 last Friday. The cumulative number of hospitalizations due to the virus is 6,537. To date, roughly 1 in 20 (5.0%) reported COVID cases in the state have resulted in a hospitalization.

COUNTIES WITH THE MOST ACTIVE CASES

  • Yellowstone County: 110 new; 1,162 active
  • Flathead County: 94 new; 1,000 active
  • Cascade County: 116 new; 895 active
  • Missoula County: 183 new; 740 active
  • Gallatin County: 131 new; 441 active
  • Lewis & Clark County: 146 new; 440 active
  • Lincoln County: 89 new; 232 active
  • Silver Bow County: 50 new; 152 active
  • Lake County: 27 new; 131 active
  • Hill County: 45 new; 115 active

About 51% of eligible residents are now vaccinated, with 468,483 Montanans now considered fully vaccinated. If you want to get vaccinated, contact your county health department, or click here.

There have been 130,705 cumulative cases of COVID in Montana. The cumulative number of recoveries is now 122,525. There were 13,714 new COVID tests administered since the last DPHHS report.

The information above is from the DPHHS website and is current as of Tuesday, September 7, 2021. The site also has county-specific data on the number of new cases, cumulative cases, vaccination rates, and more.