Porter Hospital


DR. ERIC BENZ can feel the strength course through his body as he receives the COVID-19 vaccine recently. He got one of more than 760 doses that Porter Hospital has administered in the past three weeks. Porter will have put around 1,000 shots in arms by the end of this week. Photos by Nicole Webb/Porter Medical Center
MIDDLEBURY — By the end of this week, Porter Hospital will have given out a combined total of 1,000 COVID-19 vaccine doses to its staff and other frontline healthcare workers, though state and federal authorities have yet to indicate when the vaccine will be available to the general public. “We want to remind folks that it’s not time for them to call us, at this point,” Porter Medical Center spokesman Ron Hallman said. “We want folks to know that calling us at this point is really not a plan. We pledge we’ll share information the minute we have it, through all of our social media channels,...
MIDDLEBURY — Porter Medical Center continues to dispense COVID-19 vaccines to its frontline health care workers at a brisk pace. By the end of Monday, 307 Porter workers had received their first of two shots. That figure includes 61 Middlebury EMS staff, along with residents and 50 staff at Helen Porter Rehabilitation & Nursing, according to Porter spokesman Ron Hallman. “We continue to plan vaccination clinics for frontline caregivers and are reaching out and collecting necessary information from community-based providers of a variety of health care services regarding the number of staff...

REGISTERED NURSE KELLY Gill was all smiles as she prepared to administer the county’s very first COVID vaccine on Dec. 16. She didn’t get much sleep the night before because she was so excited to be part of the historic moment, she said. Independent photo/Megan James
MIDDLEBURY — Porter Medical Center administered COVID-19 vaccines to 193 of its frontline workers last week and was expected to inoculate another 150-170 this week, in what has become the first phase of protecting local health care professionals most likely to have contact with coronavirus-positive patients. Meanwhile, Helen Porter Rehabilitation & Nursing residents and staff this week were slated to get their first COVID-19 vaccines through a separate program coordinated locally by HealthDirect Pharmacy Services. The plan is focused on an initial 90 Helen Porter residents and...
MIDDLEBURY — Jessica Holmes and Amey Ryan have been thinking a lot about the toll the COVID-19 pandemic has been taking on folks working in Middlebury’s dining and health care sectors. Holmes is a Middlebury College professor of economics and member of the Green Mountain Care Board, while Ryan is broker/owner at IPJ Real Estate and a member of the Better Middlebury Partnership. “I have close friends who own restaurants and close friends who work in the health care industry and I have seen them all struggle during this pandemic,” Holmes said through an email. “The financial burden is real, as...
MIDDLEBURY — Porter Medical Center has asked for an initial 600-plus doses of COVID-19 vaccine to administer as soon as possible to its front-line health care workers, hospital officials confirmed on Friday. But while Vermont Department of Health (DOH) officials have repeatedly pointed to vaccine availability this month, Porter officials still haven’t heard a specific date upon which to expect the coveted inoculations. “There’s still a lot of uncertainty around the ‘what,’ ‘when’ and also number of vaccines we will receive,” said Dr. Anna Benvenuto, PMC’s chief medical officer. “There are...
MIDDLEBURY — UVM Health Network, which includes Porter Medical Center in Middlebury, has curtailed some patient services after experiencing a confirmed cyberattack affecting some of its information technology systems last week. Officials said they have implemented well-practiced standby procedures to continue providing safe care, but the attack has caused variable impacts on services at the six hospitals and physicians’ practices in the organization. “Our IT team is working around-the-clock to restore systems as quickly as possible,” UVMHN officials said in a media release. “While we are...
MIDDLEBURY — In a move that could have dire long-term consequences for Addison County’s nursing home, the Green Mountain Care Board (GMBC) on Tuesday rejected Porter Hospital’s request for a 5.75% increase in its commercial rate as part of its fiscal year 2021 budget, instead determining the hospital should make do with a 4% hike. The board had been asked on Tuesday to reconsider its prior rejection of Porter’s proposed rate hike. The GMCB did however give Porter a little good news. The panel had originally ruled that 1% of the 4% increase for Porter should be tied to the COVID pandemic,...
MIDDLEBURY — Tom Thompson, who has been serving as the interim president and chief operating officer of UVM Health Network Porter Medical Center since last February, has been selected as the permanent president/chief operating officer of Porter by the UVMHN and Porter boards.  Thompson joined Porter last winter to help lead the organization through the implementation of the next phase of the Epic Electronic Health Record system and develop a three-year strategic plan for the organization. Soon after his arrival, the COVID-19 pandemic emerged and became an unanticipated and primary...
MIDDLEBURY — University of Vermont Health Network Porter Medical Center announced on Tuesday it had reached a tentative, three-year agreement with the union representing 130 Porter registered nurses. The deal will increase salaries by 21% over the course of the pact.  The size of the increase, according to Porter management and nurses’ union, reflects a commitment to paying RNs a more competitive wage that will make PMC better able to retain and recruit personnel. The contract assures nurses a 9% raise in year one, and a 6% raise in years two and three, amounting to a total of 21%. “I think...
MIDDLEBURY — Porter Medical Center officials on Friday morning indicated that Helen Porter Nursing & Rehabilitation is not in imminent peril of closing in spite of its ongoing budget shortfalls, but said the facility will be in serious financial trouble going forward if state regulators maintain that Porter can no longer partially subsidize the service through its hospital budget. Porter Hospital officials on Tuesday, Sept. 29, will lobby the Green Mountain Care Board (GMCB) to reconsider its recommendation to pare back the hospital’s Fiscal Year 2021 budget request because it in part...

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Addison County Independent