COVID-19

03/23/2020
MIDDLEBURY — Concerns about the spread of coronavirus prompted the Charter House Coalition (CHC) to close its warming shelter on Saturday, March 21, but homeless individuals continued to be served in Addison County. The CHC sent its remaining guests to local motels and hotels, including the Courtyard by Marriott, and the John Graham Emergency Shelter in Vergennes continues to keep its doors open. Doug Sinclair, CHC co-director, explained the traffic in and out of the shelter made the shelter too vulnerable to COVID-19 contagion. The shelter accommodates overnight guests who are served by...

PORTER MEDICAL CENTER has three acute care beds ready for the worst COVID-19 patients and the capability to get help from its parent organization, UVM Health Network. A sign at the entrance to the Middlebury campus directs those with an appointment where to get virus testing. Independent photo/Steve James
03/23/2020
*Update: According to the Vermont Health Department website, there are now three confirmed cases in Addison County as of Monday morning.* MIDDLEBURY — Porter Medical Center continues to prepare for a potential influx of coronavirus patients. The institution is taking inventory of its assets, which are considerable when combined with its parent organization, the University of Vermont Health Network. As of this writing, there was one confirmed COVID-19 case in Addison County. That person was flagged at Porter’s drive-through COVID-19 testing service, and is self-isolating at home. But hospital...
03/23/2020
MIDDLEBURY — Since Middlebury College announced on March 10 that it would send most students home and transition to online classes until further notice, the college’s roughly 1,200 employees have had to adjust to rapidly changing work environments while facing uncertainties about what the future might hold for their jobs. College officials are sympathetic. “We know that you have questions and concerns about what working at Middlebury will look like in the months ahead, and how your jobs and lives — and those of your families and loved ones — will be affected,” wrote President Laurie Patton,...

THE SENIOR EDITORSHIP team of the Middlebury College Campus newspaper gathered for one final photo together during its coronavirus meeting before dispersing to points near and far. Photo courtesy of Benji Renton
03/23/2020
MIDDLEBURY — In the days following the March 10 announcement that Middlebury College, in an effort to slow the spread of COVID-19, would temporarily suspend in-person classes and send most students home, the reporters, photographers and editors of the Middlebury Campusnewspaper reluctantly dispersed to all corners of the globe. “One of our editors is from Hawaii,” said co-managing editor Bochu Ding in a phone interview with the Independent. “Another is flying to Helsinki (Finland). Another one’s going to China.”  Ding, himself, spoke from the San Francisco Bay area. But under the leadership...

ROBBIE MILLER, KITCHEN manager of Charter House Coalition’s warming shelter at 27 North Pleasant St. in Middlebury, chats with two guests on Thursday. Shelters in Middlebury and Vergennes are changing protocols to continue to help the homeless during the COVID-19 pandemic. Independent photo Steve James
03/23/2020
UPDATE: The Charter House warming shelter has closed. Click here to read the story. MIDDLEBURY — Addison County homeless shelters continue to stay open for business, and they’re working in concert with area lodgers to house those most apt to get very sick if they were to contract the coronavirus. JOHN GRAHAM SHELTER John Graham Housing & Services (JGHS) can accommodate up to 25 homeless individuals at its Vergennes shelter. In addition, the nonprofit owns and operates a combined total of 12 affordable apartment units in Vergennes, Middlebury and Bristol. As usual, JGHS is full, but...
03/23/2020
SPONSORED CONTENT The outbreak of respiratory illness caused by a new coronavirus, known as COVID-19, is cause for concern but not panic. The UVM Health Network Porter Medical Center is working with the Vermont State Health Department and our Network colleagues to coordinate our preparedness efforts based upon guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Our highest priority remains providing safe, quality care for all of our patients.  New Limitations to Visitors and Outpatient Appointments We have made significant changes to our visitor policies at the hospital and...
03/23/2020
VERGENNES — Vergennes and its surrounding communities are working together to coordinate their efforts and to provide residents with up-to-date information about access to services and safe practices during the COVID-19 crisis. Vergennes took the lead, but officials from other communities, notably Ferrisburgh, have been acting and participating in virtual meetings that also include the area’s two representatives in the Vermont House, Diane Lanpher and Matt Birong, both Vergennes Democrats.  Actions include consistent messaging on town and city websites and Facebook pages, efforts to protect...
03/23/2020
ADDISON COUNTY — There’s a popular saying in entertainment circles — “The show must go on.” Well, the coronavirus has trumped that maxim for performance venues around Addison County, as it should. The curtains are drawn and the stage lights have dimmed for an uncertain length of time, until society receives the “all-clear signal” from health care officials. Middlebury’s Town Hall Theater was already anticipating a modified performance schedule this year as a result of the downtown Middlebury rail bridges project, which will include a 10-week shutdown of Main Street and Merchants Row beginning...
03/23/2020
MANCHESTER, N.H. — The American Red Cross now faces a severe blood shortage due to an unprecedented number of blood drive cancellations in response to the coronavirus outbreak. Healthy individuals are needed now to donate to help patients counting on lifesaving blood. The Red Cross has implemented new measures to ensure blood drives and donation centers are even safer for our donors and staff, and is encouraging individuals to schedule an appointment to give blood with the Red Cross by visiting RedCrossBlood. org, using the Red Cross Blood Donor App, calling 1-800-RED- CROSS or enabling the...
03/23/2020
VERGENNES — Municipal, first response and other officials in the Vergennes area held an online meeting Friday to workout details of their response to the COVID-19 crisis. Eighteen people attended the meeting, included officials from Panton, Ferrisburgh and Vergennes; the Addison Northwest School District; Vergennes Area Rescue Squad (VARS); Bixby Library; and Vergennes Partnership, plus Rep. Diane Lanpher, D-Vergennes. At the meeting: •  City Manager Daniel Hofman said city Department of Public Works employees had been restricted to “only essential work.” He noted that many are also...

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Addison County Independent

58 Maple Street
Middlebury, VT 05753

Phone: 802.388.4944
Fax: 802.388.3100