It was a busy morning for the staff at the Missoula City County Health Department as they tallied up a new record number of positive COVID 19 cases for Thursday, totaling 82 in just one day.

Incident Commander Cindy Farr provides details.

“Our highest number yet to be recorded in one day happened today, that's 84 new positive cases,” said Farr. “People that are under 30 are still the primary age group contracting the disease. One of the biggest concerns that we have is that the CDC recently came out with a report that shows that when you see a big spike in the younger age groups, particularly as a group of people that are 20 to 29 that within two weeks you tend to see a big spike in all other age groups.”

Farr explained the statistic.

“People who are 20 to 29 year old years old, still go see their parents, they still go see their grandparents,” she said. “Sometimes they work in our schools or they are tutors for kids or they’re babysitters, and so they have a unique interaction with all other age groups. That's really unique to that 20 to 29 year old age group, and so we're keeping a close eye on how it's going to spread over the next week or so.”

Farr said the health department is looking into possible closures due to the rapidly increasing numbers in that 20 to 29 age group.

“That is something that we can do locally,” she said. “Right now we're really digging into the data to figure out if there's any particular area that we're seeing the transmission where a closure order might be warranted, but so far we are not finding that because what I was saying is that what we're seeing that it's people who are close contacts to another case.”

Regarding the President and the First Lady testing positive for COVID 19, Farr said the virus doesn’t care who you are or where you live or work.

“When I say no one's immune, even President Trump and the First Lady are not immune to this disease either,” she said. “We're all susceptible to it. The President and the First Lady developed the disease after being in close contact to someone who tested positive. That's the same thing that we're seeing here in Missoula, is that the majority of our cases are the result of being a close contact.”

Farr handled the duties of visiting with the media on Friday, as Health Officer Ellen Leahy is out of town until Monday, October 5.

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