Vermont Business Magazine As negotiations on new rules for addressing pandemics are underway at the World Health Organization (WHO), Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont), Chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, today sent a letter to Ambassador Pamela Hamamoto urging her to push for the inclusion of strong reasonable pricing, technology sharing, and access standards in the international agreement. Ambassador Hamamoto leads negotiations over the Pandemic Accord with the target date of May 2024 for an agreement to be adopted by WHO’s 194 member countries.
by Timothy McQuiston, Vermont Business Magazine COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations were down slightly last week, but they have remained steady since late August. Fatalities also continue at a steady rate, with another 6 last week for a pandemic total of 1,050, as of October 21 (the most recent data available). The CDC released a new vaccine booster in October. The Vermont Department of Health reported November 1, 2023, that COVID-19 hospitalizations fell to a statewide total of 30, down from 31 last week. COVID-19 activity remains in the "Low" range, according to the VDH. Reported cases last week were 217, down from 220. Cases were over 300 in late September. VDH reported 21 COVID deaths in October (there were 33 in October 2022 and 47 in October 2021 and zero in October 2020, which was the last month since the beginning of the pandemic to record no COVID-related fatalities).
Northeastern Vermont Development Association This Wednesday there will be a lunchtime webinar presentation of the VT Public Service Department's recently released report, Vermont Weighs In – Public Opinion on Renewable Electricity. This report covers work done in partnership with MassINC Polling Group to conduct a statewide survey and focus groups to hear from Vermonters about their priorities around electricity and discuss considerations for future policies and programs. Want to learn more before attending? Read the full report or review the summary slides. Review NVDA's report following the Sept "Say WATT" listening sessions to see what top electricity priorities were identified in the NEK. Participate in the Renewable Energy Standard (RES) Reform Working Group Meeting on Nov 15 (online).
Vermont Business Magazine Ahead of the final Senate confirmation vote today on nominee Dr. Monica Bertagnolli to serve as the Director of the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH), Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont), Chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, spoke on the floor of the Senate on the need to lower the cost of prescription drugs and the need for major NIH reform.
Vermont Business Magazine The Vermont Department of Financial Regulation has joined a North American Securities Administrators Association multi-state settlement with Raymond James & Associates, Inc and Raymond James Financial Services, Inc. Raymond James is a broker-dealer registered in Vermont and domiciled in St Petersburg, Florida. In Vermont, Raymond James executed over 674 transactions, which included an unreasonable commission for equity transactions requiring full restitution plus interest to its Vermont clients in the amount of $28,198. Raymond James also will pay a penalty of $75,000. Vermont customers eligible for the restitution will be contacted directly by Raymond James by letter mailed to the customer’s last known address.
Vermont Business Magazine All Vermont Department of Motor Vehicle (DMV) offices will be closed to the public November 8-14 in order to implement the major computer system upgrade that the Department has been working on for the past year, and also to conduct the necessary employee training. There will be no online vehicle registration renewals or replacements from November 5-12. All other online services will be available, but credit card payment processing may be delayed during this time. Customers will be able to use the online scheduling system to make appointments for after the offices reopen for in-person business. All online services will be available on November 13. All DMV offices will be open to the public On November 15.
Vermont Business Magazine National Life Group was named to the Top 100 Technology Team Award OnCon Icon Award list, announced on October 24. According to a congratulatory email, award winners have been selected by the public. Voters selected teams that they felt demonstrated a good mix of success and positive impact on their organization, the team made strong contributions through thought leadership, the team has been innovative in their projects, and the team leader has exhibited exceptional leadership.
Vermont Business Magazine Lung cancer screens are on pace to increase by over 27% in 2023 in the UVM Cancer Center’s lung screening program over the previous year, after a multi-faceted public education campaign publicizing new guidelines for screening eligibility was implemented in the summer and fall of 2022. In 2022, the UVM Medical Center screened 1,634 patients, from both Vermont and northern New York. It is on track to screen 2,081 in 2023. Other sites in Vermont the campaign reached have also seen increases. The increase is good news for November, which the White House has designated Lung Cancer Awareness Month, said Dr. Beth Zigmund, the director of UVM Cancer Center’s Lung Screening Program. But even with the increase, screening rates remain much too low, she said.
Vermont Business Magazine To help ensure Vermonters who are experiencing homelessness and don’t have adequate financial resources can seek temporary housing in hotels and motels during harsh winter weather, the Department for Children and Families (DCF) is announcing the seasonal policy for Emergency Shelter. As outlined in the 2023-24 Adverse Weather Conditions Policy: Between December 15, 2023 - March 15, 2024 Expanded eligibility will be in place regardless of the forecasted weather; From November 15 - December 15, 2023, and March 15 - April 15, 2024 Expanded eligibility will be in place under certain conditions.
Vermont Business Magazine The Department of Vermont Health Access (DVHA) and the University of Vermont Medical Center announced today that Vermont Medicaid is entering a pilot program which will provide its members the ability to participate in the Partners Aligned in Transformative Healing (PATH) program at UVM Medical Center’s Comprehensive Pain Program, a clinical arm of the Osher Center for Integrative Health at UVM. Up to 100 Medicaid members suffering from chronic pain will be able to participate in the pilot program.
Vermont Business Magazine The American Heart Association, the worldwide leader in resuscitation science and education, added lifesavers to the chain of survival by providing youth sports organizations in the Upper Valley with CPR & First Aid in Youth Sports™ Training Kits. A total of 30 kits, with the support of The Jack and Dorothy Byrne Foundation, were distributed to local youth sports organizations at the Kilton Public Library in West Lebanon on Saturday, November 4th. The Association's CPR & First Aid in Youth Sports Training Kit is designed specifically for youth sports coaches to teach the lifesaving skill of CPR, how to use an AED, and how to help during sports-related emergencies.
Vermont Business Magazine United Counseling Service (UCS) welcomes Henrietta Edgar as its new head of Developmental Services, which serves Bennington County residents with intellectual and developmental disabilities and autism spectrum disorder. Edgar most recently served as Administrator of Residential Services for the Center for Disability Services in Albany, NY, and brings over a decade of experience in the health and human services field.