Where is the flu this year? According to data from the Montana Health Department, the state has not recorded a single case of the flu for the 2020-21 flu season.

Some believe it's because most people are masked up and practicing social distancing because of COVID-19. But others are asking the question: If that's the case, why have we not seen more improvement in the battle against the coronavirus?

NBC Montana quotes Gallatin City-County Health Department human services director Tracy Knoedler as saying, "Providers have been testing, and everything has been negative so far. Masks may be helping, among other things, such as increased hand and surface hygiene and better overall awareness of disease transmission and prevention strategies. We are not out of the woods yet."

During the 2019-2020 influenza season, 11,255 cases, 514 hospitalizations, and 41 deaths due to influenza were reported from all counties in Montana, according to the DPHSS.

Looking at the latest COVID-19 numbers from the Gallatin City-County Health Department, there's some good news to report. The rolling 7-Day average has shown a drop over the past couple of weeks. Many were anticipating a spike in COVID-19 cases when the students returned to Montana State University on January 11th, but in the two weeks that MSU has resumed classes, the 7-Day average in Gallatin County has gone from 86 to 57.7.

Hospitalizations have also returned to more manageable levels in Gallatin County. We're back to single-digits with nine patients currently hospitalized due to the coronavirus

No flu this year is a great thing! And so is watching the COVID numbers trend down in Gallatin County.

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