Latest health Reporting
How slow COVID-19 test results complicate life for public health workers and patients.
The COVID-19 pandemic, for many shelters and residents, has proven to be a distinct challenge compared to other disasters, such as fires or floods. Part of the difficulty comes from a tangled web of bureaucratic procedures and relief funds at the federal, state and local levels. But nearly five months into the crisis, some providers also describe feeling forgotten or misunderstood by policy makers, to the detriment of the populations they serve.
McCully and other Montana public health officials said the number of people who are not cooperating with contact tracers is small, but that they waste valuable resources when they mislead nurses and pose a risk to others when they ignore health officials’ requests for information. Lack of cooperation is also taking a toll on public health nurses who are working long hours in the midst of a pandemic.
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Twenty years ago, the world’s oldest nation implemented an innovative social tax to support its aging citizens — and to free younger generations from some of the burdens of age. Could the model work in Montana?
The same day health officials announced a coronavirus outbreak at a Billings assisted living facility, Gov. Steve Bullock said Tuesday that his public health department will order all assisted living and nursing home facilities in the state to test all employees and residents before allowing any more visitors.
Montana, the oldest state in the western United States, faces many of the same problems as Japan, the world’s oldest country. Might there be solutions for Montana from what looks to be a successful experiment enacted two decades ago to help pay for elder care in Japan?
Montana’s new Medicaid work requirement is still pending federal approval to go into effect. In the meantime, enrollment has increased for the first time in over a year.