Reporting issues boost state Covid-19 numbers Windsor County positive numbers continue to rise

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This week, Vermont Health Officials were able to deflect a record-setting daily total of 314 positive Covid-19 cases announced on Thursday by indicating that there were some reporting issues from various partners that were impacting that number. The previous highest daily total was 266 cases reported for March 31, 2020.

What can’t be explained by the testing data delays however are the record double-digit deaths reported this week or the record hospitalization numbers.

According to the state Health Department’s press release on Thursday, Sept. 16, “The Health Department tracks and monitors the time it takes from when specimens are collected for testing to when the results are reported to the department by the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard. The glitch involved EllKay, an IT vendor working for Broad.” The Health Department press release also said that according to data collected after Sept. 9, they noticed a notable increase in turnaround times for testing data, which had been averaging about 1.86 days. The VDH said updates on these data lags will be provided as they become available.

The total daily positive case number reported on Thursday has since been revised to 329, another example of a back-dating practice that has prompted questions about the state’s transparency of positive case numbers in recent weeks.

Weekly death toll sets record; Windsor Co. numbers continue to rise

The state has reported a weekly record of 12 Covid-19 deaths over the past week, triple the four deaths reported last week and the first time the state has seen double-digit weekly death total since the start of the pandemic. In total, 296 Vermonters have died from Covid-19.  Nine of those who died were over 80 years old, one was age 70 to 79, one was aged 60 to 69 and on one was aged 50 – 59.

Currently, 41 people are hospitalized with Covid-19, an increase from 30 last week. The highest daily total of Covid-positive hospitalizations thus far, according to Health Department spokesman Ben Truman was  65 on Feb. 2, 2021. The number of people in intensive care has also increased from nine to 12. The positivity rate declined slightly however going from 3.2 percent to 3.1 percent this week.

The weekly total of positive Covid-19 cases surged to 1,421, another weekly record, up from 1,032 Covid-19 cases reported last week. What part the delay in reporting played in this overall number remains to be determined depending on what details the state uncovers. The Vermont total now stands at 31,156 since the beginning of the pandemic.

Windsor County numbers continued to climb this week, with 108 new Covid-19 cases reported, up from 92 cases reported last week. Windham County numbers saw a decrease however reporting 69 cases, significantly down from 96 reported last week.

In this report, the total positive case numbers, deaths and other statistics are based on data from Friday, Sept. 10 to Friday Sept. 17, published on the Health Department’s Case Dashboard.

Local town numbers have continued to rise with cases reported this past week at 46, up from 34 last week, primarily due to a surge in Springfield of 28 cases, almost triple from 11 last week. The other towns have held steady or decreased: with nine cases in Ludlow, the same number reported last week; seven cases in Chester, down from nine; and two cases in Cavendish, down from five. Those community updates can be seen here.

In the three weeks since Vermont schools have been in session — many for less than two weeks — positive Covid cases in schools have doubled with positive total cases now at 159 up from 81 positive cases in total last week. In the last 7 days alone, 78 cases were reported, up from 40 reported the prior week, according to Vermont’s K-12 positive Covid case update dated Sept. 12.

Vermont continues to lead the nation in vaccination rate with 87.1 percent of eligible Vermonters having received at least one dose of vaccine, up from 86.7 percent last week. Windsor County’s vaccination rate is currently at 78.8 percent up from 78.5 percent last week and Windham County’s rate has risen to 80.6 percent, up from 80.3 percent last week. For vaccination details, visit Vermont’s Covid-19 Vaccine Dashboard.

Local vaccine clinics with regular weekly hours

  • Brattleboro Memorial Hospital, 53 Fairview St., Brattleboro; 9 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday.
  • Springfield Medical Care Systems, 51 Pearl St. Level 2, Springfield; 8-11 a.m. Tuesday and Wednesday.

Local stores and pharmacies offering vaccines

Nearest walk-up clinics

Saturday, Sept. 18

  • Chester Festival on the Green, Rte. 11 Town Green, Chester, noon – 4 p.m.

Monday, Sept. 20

  • School Clinic: Fair Haven Union High School, Fair Haven, 9 a.m.- 5 p.m.

Tuesday, Sept. 21

  • School Clinic: Hartford High School, White River Jct., 9 a.m.- noon.
  • School Clinic: Manchester Elementary School, Manchester Center, 9 a.m.- 5 p.m.

Wednesday, Sept. 22

  • Cavendish Fire Dept, 2153 Main St., Cavendish, 3-7 p.m.

Thursday, Sept. 23

  • Hartford Health Care & Rehabilitation Services, 49 School St., Hartford, 3-6 p.m.

Friday, Sept. 24

  • School Clinic: Springfield High School, Springfield, 9 a.m.- 5 p.m.

To register for a vaccination and see your many options, visit the Vermont Health Department website or call 855-722-7878.

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