COVID-19

11/19/2020
Editor’s note: The writer of this letter spent 35 years working as an epidemiologist in state health departments before retiring a few years ago. Health Department Director Mark Levine and Gov. Phil Scott have been doing a good job communicating about the pandemic. There is, however, something they and others have not been emphasizing enough, in my epidemiologic opinion. Avoiding group events, wearing masks when unavoidably near other people, washing hands frequently and vigorously, and so on are indeed important. But the single best thing you can do to avoid infecting others is to stay home...
11/17/2020
UPDATE: The college reported one additonal positive test result for another student after this story went to press yesterday, Wednesday, November 18. There are currently three active cases — and 24 student contacts under quarantine — on campus. MIDDLEBURY — Two more Middlebury College students have tested positive for COVID-19 and another 17 have been listed as "student contacts under quarantine," according to the latest data released by the college. It’s the first time Middlebury has recorded a positive case since September. The positive cases came from a batch of 504 tests conducted on...
11/16/2020
Editor’s note: The writer of this letter spent 35 years working as an epidemiologist in state health departments before retiring a few years ago. Health Department Director Mark Levine and Gov. Phil Scott have been doing a good job communicating about the pandemic. There is, however, something they and others have not been emphasizing enough, in my epidemiologic opinion. Avoiding group events, wearing masks when unavoidably near other people, washing hands frequently and vigorously, and so on are indeed important. But the single best thing you can do to avoid infecting others is to stay home...

Erin Dufault, Mount Abraham Union High School counselor
11/16/2020
Erin Dufault has been a high school counselor for 17 years, but nothing in her career could have prepared her for this pandemic moment. Now in her fourth year at Mount Abraham Union High School — which, like the other middle and high schools in our area, has embraced a hybrid model of remote and in-person learning — she sees students in person just two days a week. But she is making the most of that time. Like pretty much everyone everywhere, she has had to pivot. She used to provide daily support to students in her office, in hallways and cafeterias, and at college information nights. When...

Gov. Phil Scott and Health Commissioner Mark Levine. Photo courtesy of VTDigger.org
11/13/2020
Gov. Phil Scott on Friday said the state is “at a tipping point” with the recent influx of COVID-19 cases. He announced a ban on inter-household gatherings, the closure of bars and social clubs, and the cancellation of recreational sports leagues as the COVID-19 case count rises in Vermont. The governor said that too many Vermonters have not been following the state’s guidance on social distancing and limiting in-person gatherings. He, also indicated that Halloween parties contributed to the current rise in coronavirus cases. “Given our recent case growth, we have no choice but to restrict...
11/12/2020
MIDDLEBURY — As COVID-19 cases rose to record levels in Vermont, Middlebury College announced Thursday evening it will move to a mandatory campus quarantine beginning 6 p.m. Friday, Nov. 13, and continuing until students depart for the year on Saturday, Nov. 21. “Simply put, while we currently have no known cases of COVID-19 on campus, it is now imperative that we take ... steps to ensure the safest possible departure for students and to protect the entire community,” wrote Chief Health Officer Mark Peluso, Environmental Health & Safety Officer Jen Kazmierczac and Acting Dean of Students...
11/12/2020
VERMONT — As Vermont grapples with a surge in COVID-19 cases, like the rest of the country, state officials are putting in place slightly tighter restrictions designed to bolster social distancing and reduce the spread of the disease caused by the coronavirus.  Gov. Phil Scott on Tuesday announced that Vermont is requiring a 14-day quarantine for every person coming to Vermont, or heading back into Vermont, for nonessential travel. The quarantine can be cut in half, to seven days, if the person tests negative for COVID-19. The state had been relying on a color-coded travel map — people from...
11/12/2020
MONTPELIER — Vermont’s rifle deer season starts Saturday, Nov. 14, and runs through Nov. 29. Vermont hunters are being urged to keep COVID-19 safety measures in mind and use the Department of Fish and Wildlife’s online reporting system to report their deer.  “As virus rates continue to increase both in Vermont and regionally, it is important that hunters follow all of the Vermont Department of Health COVID-19 safety precautions, including wearing a mask, keeping six feet of distance, and avoiding crowds,” said Secretary of Natural Resources Julie Moore. If a person living in Vermont chooses...
11/09/2020
Vermont reported 23 new cases of COVID Monday, after weekend tallies reached a high not seen since the start of the pandemic nearly eight months ago. The state had 43 cases on Sunday, the highest single-day tally since April 9, according to the Department of Health’s data portal (there was one case reported in Addison County on Sunday). While today’s case total is lower, it remains part of a rise in cases that began this fall from the Montpelier ice rink outbreak. That outbreak now tops 112 cases, and its effects have reached multiple K-12 schools and caused 30 cases at St. Michael’s College...
11/06/2020
HANCOCK/RIPTON — The Rikert Nordic Center and the Middlebury Snow Bowl will welcome skiers this winter with COVID-19 safety measures in place. Changes include required online reservations for skiing, equipment rentals, and lessons, as well as lodge access that is limited to restrooms, equipment rental, and grab-and-go food purchases. “We are looking forward to a great ski season,” said Mike Hussey, director of skiing at Middlebury College, which owns and operates the cross country and Alpine skiing venues. “This year will really put the focus on what skiing is all about—being up in the...

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Addison County Independent

58 Maple Street
Middlebury, VT 05753

Phone: 802.388.4944
Fax: 802.388.3100