During the last seven days, 45 more Montanans died of COVID-19, and 6,404 new cases have been added, bringing the active case count to 9,721.
“It’s gotten to the point that we are in a crisis,” said Billings Clinic CEO Dr. Scott Ellner.
A hospital in Bozeman is considering whether to add inpatient psychiatric care after a concerted push from mental health advocates. But even if it adds beds, hospitals across Montana provide a cautionary tale: finding enough workers to staff such beds is its own challenge, and some behavioral health units routinely reach capacity.
In the past week, 24 more people have died from the disease and 29 more have been hospitalized. In total, there are 220 active COVID-19 hospitalizations in Montana.
During a Tuesday visit to Yellowstone County to meet with local officials, Dr. Deborah Birx, the coronavirus response coordinator for the White House Coronavirus Task Force, advocated for masking and a ramp up in asymptomatic testing.
The largest hospitals in Montana, in response to questions sent by Lee Newspapers, said last week they have all taken steps to prepare for a surge in COVID-19 patients. That means increasing bed capacity and inventories of critical supplies, though they are facing the same supply-chain issues that facilities are nationwide.
What is bed capacity today?
Friday was the last day that patients were admitted to the Inpatient Rehabilitation Facility at Providence St. Patrick Hospital in Missoula.
BILLINGS – Inside the lobby of the Billings Clinic Psychiatric Center, just to the right of main reception desk, is a large set of heavy doubl…