BILLINGS - Yellowstone County’s pandemic death toll rose to 514 deaths with four more county residents succumbing to COVID-19 illness, RiverStone Health reported Wednesday.
The latest COVID-19 victims are:
· A man, 100 years old or older, who passed away on Tuesday at a Billings hospital. He had underlying medical conditions that raised his risk of severe COVID-19 illness. He was not vaccinated.
· A woman in her 80s, who passed away on Tuesday at a Billings hospital. She had underlying medical conditions and was not vaccinated.
· A woman in her 60s, who passed away on Tuesday at a Billings hospital. She had underlying medical conditions and was fully vaccinated.
· A man in his 80s, who passed away on Wednesday, at a Billings hospital. He had underlying medical conditions and was not vaccinated.
On Wednesday, Billings hospitals had 83 COVID-19 inpatients, including 45 who weren’t vaccinated and 38 who were vaccinated. Among the hospitalized COVID-19 patients, 15 were in ICU and 12 were on ventilators.
Vaccination remains the safest, most effective way to reduce the risk of COVID-19 illness, hospitalization, and death, the health agency said in a press release.
Shots and gift cards Thursday
To encourage people to choose COVID-19 vaccination, RiverStone Health will offer an extra incentive this week: a Visa gift card worth at least $40. Gift cards are available to those who are vaccinated at the
free, walk-in vaccination clinic at the Shrine Auditorium, 1125 Broadwater Ave., between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. Thursday. The gift cards are offered in partnership with Montana insurance companies.
For children ages 5 to 17 receiving the vaccine, the gift card will be given to the parent or guardian. Signed parental consent is required for vaccination of children under age 18. Booster shots as well as first and second doses of COVID-19 vaccine are available at RiverStone Health Clinics.
People who receive a COVID-19 vaccination at the RiverStone Health Immunization Clinic will get a gift card this week. The immunization clinic is located at 123 S. 27th St., in the four-story building. Call 406.247.3382 for an appointment.
Free home test kits
Free at-home tests to detect the COVID-19 virus will be available at the vaccination clinic Thursday at the Shrine. Those receiving COVID-19 vaccinations may pick up free test kits inside the auditorium.
People who want free tests, but aren’t getting vaccinated can pick up test kits in the Shrine parking lot between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. Thursday. Look for the RiverStone Health trailer.
Free at-home COVID-19 test kits also are available at:
· Billings Public Library at 10 a.m. Saturday until the supply is gone.
· Billings Family YMCA, 402 N. 32nd St., at the front desk during regular business hours.
· Laurel Public Library, Monday through Thursday 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Saturday 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
· RiverStone Health Clinics in Billings, Bridger, Joliet and Worden during regular clinic hours.
· The Lil Anderson Center at RiverStone Health (four-story building at 123 S. 27th St.) from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. weekdays.
For more information on reducing your COVID-19 risk, please visit covid.riverstonehealth.org.