One Vermonter died of COVID-19 over the past day, the state Department of Health reported Monday. The death toll is now 175.
The department reported 113 new cases of COVID-19 on Monday. The reported total of 12,083 is 118 higher than the total reported Sunday. The department did not explain the discrepancy.
Bennington County continues to have the highest rate of COVID-19 among Vermont counties, at 307.9 cases per 10,000 residents. Chittenden County is second, at 248.8, while the rate in Windham County is 189.0. The towns of Bennington, Manchester and Winhall have each had more than 80 new cases per 10,000 residents over the past two weeks.
Over the past two weeks, Bennington County has reported 327 new cases, and Windham County has reported 88. Chittenden County, Vermont’s largest county, has had 490 over the same period.
Sixty Vermonters are hospitalized with the disease, and six of those patients are in intensive care units.
Twelve of Vermont’s 14 counties reported new cases over the past day. Chittenden County had 30; Rutland County had 17; Bennington County had 13; Caledonia, Franklin and Washington counties each had nine; Windsor County had eight; Addison County had five; Orange and Windham counties each had four; and Essex and Orleans counties each had two. Grand Isle and Lamoille counties reported no new cases.
So far, 305,649 people have been tested. The reported seven-day average for positive tests remained at 2.0 percent.
The number of Vermonters reported to have recovered from COVID-19 rose by 14 since Sunday, to 8,268.
The department reported that 410 people were being monitored for the disease as of Monday, an increase of 12 from Sunday. Of these, 163 are visitors to Vermont.
The statistics supplied by the Vermont Department of Health at midday each day are accurate as of the end of the previous day. The information is preliminary and subject to change.
8.8% OF VERMONTERS HAVE RECEIVED VACCINE
The Department of Health reported Saturday that 50,307 Vermonters have so far received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. That represents 8.8 percent of those age 16 and older who can receive the vaccine, and an increase of four-tenths of one percent over Friday.
In Bennington County, 9.8 percent of those eligible have received at least one dose.
The state is in its second week of administering vaccine to those ages 75 and older. State officials have said that more than 32,500 eligible Vermonters have made appointments at community clinics. To schedule an appointment, visit https://www.healthvermont.gov/covid-19/vaccine/getting-covid-19-vaccine. Those without internet access can call 855-722-7878.
VACCINATION SITES TO BE OPEN, IN SPITE OF SNOW
Vaccination sites will be open on Tuesday in Vermont as most of the state is expected to get a half to a foot of snow, but anyone concerned about traveling can reschedule their appointments, state officials said Monday.
Vermont is now vaccinating people ages 75 and older who have registered for appointments.
Those who cannot get to their appointments or do not want to travel in the snow should call 855-722-7878 to reschedule, the Vermont Joint Information Center said in a statement. They will be given a new appointment later in the week and will not have to start the registration process over, the center said.
Vermonters are urged not to travel if driving conditions are difficult, the center said.
The Health Department was also contacting people who have appointments on Tuesday to give them the option of rescheduling, the center said.
Others who have registered to get their vaccine at Kinney Drug should contact the store to see if the clinic will be open and how to reschedule.
BURLINGTON TESTS WASTEWATER FOR VIRUS VARIANTS
Vermont’s largest city is continuing to monitor its wastewater for any signs of the new, more infectious strains of COVID-19.
Burlington has been testing its wastewater since August to monitor COVID-19 levels and recently starting testing for the U.K. variant, WCAX-TV reports.
“We still are not detecting the new variant, the U.K. variant, which is good. It doesn’t mean it’s not here, it just means if it is, it’s at such a low level that we can’t detect it,” Brian Lowe, the city’s chief innovation officer, told the station.
Lowe said the type of test for the U.K. variant can also detect other mutations of the virus.
“One of those two changes is also present in the Brazilian and the South African variant, so we would be able to see there is a mutation. We wouldn’t know definitively which one, could be one of those, could be something different, but we would know there is a mutation present in our community wastewater,” he said.
PUBLIC WI-FI IN MONTPELIER
A new public Wi-Fi site has been installed outside of City Hall in Montpelier to give people more access to reliable internet connections amid the coronavirus pandemic, city officials said.
The project was sponsored by the Vermont Department of Public Service after facilities that offered Wi-Fi closed because of the pandemic, restricting people’s ability to access free and reliable internet service, the city announced on Thursday.
“The need for access to a reliable internet connections for healthcare, education, and government services has grown exponentially while existing public access points have become suddenly unavailable due to social distancing requirements,” the city said in a statement.
The Wi-Fi site is accessible anytime from a parked vehicle on the road, or in-person in the courtyard in front of Montpelier City Hall and the parking lot on the right of the building, but city officials are urging people not to congregate outside as a virus-related safety precaution.
Users should be able to access the “Montpelier Hotspot” without a password.