County mask mandate rescinded, still recommended

MISSOULA COUNTY - According to the Missoula City-County Health Department, Missoula County met its vaccination goal to move face coverings from a mandate to a recommendation as of Monday, May 10.

In a public statement, Health Officer Ellen Leahy said that 60% of the county’s eligible population has received at least one dose of the vaccine, reaching its intermediate vaccination goal. The county’s case incidence rate has also stayed below 25 new cases daily per 100,000 population on a seven-day rolling average.

In April, the County Health Board directed Leahy to rescind the mandate and issue recommendations once the goal was met. These recommendations are effective immediately. 

Leahy is recommending mask use for the following populations and settings:

1. Children ages 2-15 when in groups or congregate settings such as day camps, daycare, classrooms and social events.

2. Ages 2 and up at events, gatherings and places where groups of vaccinated and unvaccinated people may mix.

These group events include worship services, ceremonies, parties, receptions, business meetings, conferences, concerts, dances, markets and festivals. This recommendation also applies to individuals inside healthcare facilities, businesses, agencies, classrooms and government offices.

The Health Board commends their vaccinating partners and citizens’ cooperation with masks. 

This status change comes in simultaneously as Montana Governor Greg Gianforte signed House Bill 257 which voids local government and health board mandates involving closing businesses, limiting capacity or requiring masks. Businesses are still able to require masks on their own premises.

To read the full order issued by Leahy visit


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