GREAT FALLS- As health officials anticipate another spike in COVID-19 cases, Governor Bullock announces new COVID restrictions heading into the holiday season.

Cascade City-County Health Department says they’re on board with the new restrictions, and these changes could help slow the spread heading into the holiday season.

On Thursday, Cascade County reported 164 new cases, totaling more than 3,500 active cases.

Although the county has already implemented a lot of these newer restrictions, Trisha Gardner, Health Officer for the Cascade CCHD, believes these changes will benefit the state.

“I think, you know it was a necessary move from the governor. We are a state that has people traveling between jurisdictions pretty regularly. So just having local ones I think it will help to have a statewide approach and consistency from jurisdiction to jurisdiction,” says Gardner

Thanks to recent Cares Act Funds, the Cascade City-County Health Department has been able to hire 12 new additional staff members to help with the increase in cases.

Gardner says having these temporary workers available takes off some of the pressure.

“A huge relief… that’s been very good for us. When numbers go up, we may have to re-prioritize how we're contacting and who we're contacting, but ideally, we want to be able to contact absolutely everybody and as well as their contacts. So, this does enable us to do that.”

As travel is anticipated to pick-up over the next couple of months, health officials are anticipating seeing numbers increase after the holiday season.

The Cascade CCHD is not recommending traveling during this time. If you do go out, please follow all safety precautions to keep families and friends safe.

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