#childsafetytips | VDH COVID-19 Update: Get your flu shot, hubs helping kids

Daily Update on Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)

September 25, 2020

New information is in red and bold.

This update is available online at healthvermont.gov/covid19

Click the “See the Latest Update” button.

Please visit the Vermont Department of Health’s COVID-19 web and data pages

Health Commissioner Urges Vermonters to Get Their Flu Shot

Getting a flu shot is important every year, but it’s even more vital during the current pandemic, said Health Commissioner Mark Levine, MD at Friday’s press conference.

This year, there are many more unknowns, said Dr. Levine. Like how common it would be to get the coronavirus and the flu, or if having the flu makes you more susceptible to getting COVID-19. We also don’t know whether a surge in cases of COVID-19 and the flu could happen at the same time — overwhelming our health care system and putting people at risk.

“Simply put: we know more about the flu than COVID-19, and we already have a vaccine to prevent it,” Dr. Levine said. “So please, get your flu shot. And make sure your children do too — anyone over 6 months old, with rare exceptions, should be vaccinated.”

It’s especially important for anyone in a high-risk group or who has underlying health conditions to get vaccinated.

While in a typical year maybe 50 percent of people get the flu vaccine, he said he’s counting on many more Vermonters getting it this year to help ward of the “twindemic.”

The Health Department has ordered more flu vaccine than usual to prepare for the increased demand, and is working closely with providers in getting their patients vaccinated. They are encouraging community partnerships to provide clinics where access may be limited, like at schools, community centers or assisted living facilities.

Get your flu shot through your doctor’s office, your local pharmacy, or look for a clinic near you. If you don’t have insurance, reach out to your local health office.

And keep up those actions that have helped Vermont prevent the spread of COVID-19 — they also help with whatever flu season may have in store.

Learn more at healthvermont.gov/flu.

Return to School Guidance

All schools will be in Step III of the safety and health guidance effective tomorrow (September 26). Read the guidance for more details: Strong and Healthy Start: Safety and Health Guidance for Vermont Schools

Questions about what this change means? Read Strong and Healthy Start FAQ: Transitioning From Step II to Step III.

Childcare Hubs

At his press briefing today, Governor Scott praised the school reopenings but urged Vermonters to remain vigilant, because the way to keep everyone safe at school is to keep everyone safe.

“About a month ago, we began creating a system of childcare hubs to support families on remote learning days,” Scott said. “And (we) have worked with communities across Vermont to expand and create these quality hubs, helping families during this unusual school year.

“Giving kids a good foundation has been a priority for me as Governor. As a former contractor, I know the stronger the foundation, the better the chance of a long lasting, positive outcome later in life. That’s why I’ve prioritized childcare investments in my time as governor.

“It’s also why I’ve emphasized in-person instruction (especially for younger students) while our low case counts support it. We need to do all we can to give our kids the best possible education, even during these uncertain and challenging times.

“I greatly appreciate the work of school administrators, teachers and support staff across the state, as well as my team at the Agency of Education for helping get our kids back to school this fall. And a special thank you to our childcare partners for supporting remote learning needs.

“But we must remember: Their success, and our ability to maintain and expand the amount of in-person learning for our kids, depends on all of us doing what we need to do to keep the level of virus low in our communities.

“Like Dr. Fauci told us: We can’t let our guard down.

“If you look at larger outbreaks in surrounding states like Maine, their health officials warn that the quick spread appears to result from folks not following the state’s safety protocols. We can’t let that happen here.

“We all have to do our part. That means:

•Wear a mask around others

•Keep physically distanced

•Wash your hands

•Stay home when sick

•Follow the travel and other health guidance

“It’s more important than ever that we keep this up, for our kids and families and for our communities and economy. If we stay vigilant and continue to suppress this virus, we’ll continue taking steps forward, not backward, and we’ll get through this stronger than before.”

Additional guidance includes:

Mental Health: A Strong and Healthy Start: Social, Emotional and Mental Health Supports During COVID-19

Sports: Fall Sports Programs for the 2020-2021 School Year

Child care: Health Guidance for Child Care and Out of School Care

Find additional resources on our Schools, Colleges and Child Care Programs web page.

COVID-19 Testing Data for Colleges/Universities and Schools

PreK-12 Schools: A table of School-Based COVID-19 Transmission is now available at healthvermont.gov/currentactivity. The table is updated weekly.

Colleges/Universities: The Department of Financial Regulation’s School Reopening web page includes links to each Vermont college and university with information about their COVID-19 testing results.

New on healthvermont.gov

Nearly 3 in 4 Vermonters with COVID-19 experience symptoms. Compare data about Vermonters who experience symptoms with those who are asymptomatic by age, sex, race and more in the new Weekly Data Summary Spotlight.

Case Information

Current COVID-19 Activity in Vermont

As of 12 p.m. on September 25, 2020

Description   Number  
Total cases*   1,731

(7 new)

Currently hospitalized   2  
Hospitalized under investigation   0  
Total people recovered   1,576  
Deaths+   58  
People tested   159,279  
Travelers monitored   469  
Contacts monitored   36  
People completed monitoring   8,757  

* Includes testing conducted at the Health Department Laboratory, commercial labs and other public health labs.

+ Death occurring in persons known to have COVID-19. Death certificate may be pending. 

Hospitalization data is provided by the Vermont Healthcare Emergency Preparedness Coalition and is based on hospitals updating this information.

Find more at the data dashboard: healthvermont.gov/currentactivity.

Guidance for Vermonters

Get the information you need at our Frequently Asked Questions.

If you are having a medical emergency, call 9-1-1 or go to the hospital.

If you think you have symptoms of COVID-19, call your health care provider.

Maintain physical distancing of at least 6 feet and wear a mask when near others.

Traveler Information

Visit our Travel to Vermont web page for continually updated information and guidance, including about quarantine requirements, testing, and to sign up with Sara Alert for symptom check reminders.

Getting Tested for COVID-19

Anyone can get tested, but not everyone needs to get tested.

Talk with your health care provider If you think you should be tested for COVID-19.

If you don’t have a provider, dial 2-1-1, or contact the nearest federally qualified health center or one of Vermont’s free & referral clinics.

Visit our testing web page for more guidance and where to get tested if you do need it.

Business Guidance

Visit the Agency of Commerce and Community Development’s website for “Work Safe” guidance.

Take Care of Your Emotional and Mental Health

If you or someone you know is in crisis or needs emotional support, help is available 24/7:

Get self-help tips and connect to mental health services at COVID Support VT.

See ways for Coping with Stress.

For more information:

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