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UVM Medical Center enacts emergency COVID staffing plan

Wed, 01/12/2022 - 4:51pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine As hospitals across the United States face increasing COVID-19 cases among patients and staff due to the omicron variant, the number of UVM Medical Center employees restricted from work due to COVID-19 – after testing positive, experiencing symptoms, or having an exposure at home, at work or in the community – is currently at 422 and is expected to continue climbing. At the same time, other employees have needed to stay home to care for children or loved ones, and patient volumes continue to be high.

VDH: COVID rapid tests distributed, dashboard reset, deaths up to 490

Wed, 01/12/2022 - 4:14pm -- tim

by Timothy McQuiston, Vermont Business Magazine The Vermont Department of Health (VDH) has completed its reporting of delayed test results due to a technical glitch over the weekend. The VDH reset case counts with the new record high set last Friday, January 7, of 2,975 cases of COVID-19. For Tuesday, January 11, they are 813. While the fatality rate has slowed, there were still three deaths reported today for a statewide total of 490. Hospitalizations January 12 were 85 (down six); the record of 101 was set January 10, 2022. ICU stays, which also had been elevated, were 27. The one-day record there was set December 7, 2021, (31). Hospitalizations and ICU visits have not surged even as cases have more than tripled the last couple of weeks.

More COVID-19 cases detected at St Johnsbury prison

Wed, 01/12/2022 - 3:23pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine The Vermont Department of Corrections is announcing two symptomatic incarcerated individuals tested positive for COVID and are in isolation at the Northeast Correctional Complex (NECC) in St Johnsbury. The individuals resided in the same building as the three prior positives whose test results were received Monday. The building, which has two open units, is now being treated as a quarantine unit. The facility remains on full lockdown. As of Wednesday afternoon, 14 incarcerated individuals are considered positive across five Vermont facilities.

All 350,000 phase one rapid COVID tests have been ordered

Wed, 01/12/2022 - 3:15pm -- tim

​Vermont Business Magazine As of 2:45 pm, all 350,000 tests available through the first phase of today’s “Say Yes” rapid test pilot program for COVID-19 have been ordered. The partnership with National Institutes of Health (NIH) and Amazon allowed Vermonters to order 350,000 free rapid tests, which will be delivered to homes over the next one to two weeks.

UVM Medical Center re-opens inpatient rehabilitation at Fanny Allen Campus

Wed, 01/12/2022 - 2:41pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Earlier today, The University of Vermont Medical Center began transferring its inpatient rehabilitation unit from its temporary main campus location, back to its location on the Fanny Allen campus in Colchester. In addition to previous upgrades, the Hospital Services team worked throughout 2021 with outside experts to assess, renovate and optimize the space’s complex system of filtration, ventilation, air conditioning and heating units, which was outdated and did not allow for optimal airflow in spaces where staff had reported symptoms such as dizziness and nausea.

Top 10 scams of 2021 released by Vermont AG: Tech support number 1

Wed, 01/12/2022 - 2:36pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Reports of scams to the Attorney General’s Consumer Assistance Program (CAP) totaled 5,154 in 2021, up just slightly from the previous year’s 5,021 reports. Two variations of the Computer Tech Support scam and the Online Listing scam claimed the number one, three, and seven spots respectively on CAP’s list of top ten scams in 2021, covering nearly a quarter of the total reports filed by Vermonters. Businesses were also targeted by internet-based scams in 2021. The Business Imposter Email Scam, where scammers represent themselves as business personnel to extort funds, had 62 reports filed—a figure that did not make the top ten but notably jumped nearly 50% from the previous year.

Retired-QB-turned-entrepreneur Drew Brees shares the key to building inner-strength and mental toughness for leadership

Wed, 01/12/2022 - 2:24pm -- katie

Vermont Business Magazine Retired NFL quarterback Drew Brees says he always has been a positive person, so much so that his New Orleans Saints teammates used to call him "annoyingly optimistic." Perhaps that's why the 2010 Super Bowl champion turned broadcaster and businessman sees adversity as a way for leaders to build their inner strength and mental toughness rather than as something to fear.

Partnership launched to save organic family farms in the Northeast

Wed, 01/12/2022 - 1:10pm -- tim
Stonyfield Co-Founder Gary Hirshberg Announces New Northeast Organic Family Farm 
Vermont Business Magazine Last fall, 89 organic family farms across Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont and eastern New York received the sudden news that Horizon, a brand owned by Danone North America, was terminating their purchase contracts, effective in early 2023. Subsequently Maple Hill Creamery announced the cancellation of contracts for an additional 46 farms. This news put these farms, many of whom have been in business for generations, at serious risk of closure unless they find alternate outlets. Today, Gary Hirshberg, Stonyfield Co-Founder and former long-time CEO, is announcing the launch of the Northeast Organic Family Farm Partnership, a first-of-its kind partnership, created to solve the crisis of disappearing family farms.

Sanders statement on Medicare limiting coverage for Alzheimer’s drug

Wed, 01/12/2022 - 12:00pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont) Tuesday issued the following statement after the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) proposed a rule that would cover Aduhelm, the outrageously expensive Alzheimer’s treatment, and similar drugs in development only for people enrolled in qualifying clinical trials: “Biogen’s outrageous original price for Aduhelm, $56,000 per year, is the poster child for how dysfunctional our drug pricing system has become and it is the perfect example of why Medicare should be negotiating drug prices with the pharmaceutical industry. If the administration takes no action, Medicare recipients will continue to see their biggest premium increase in history, all because of Biogen’s greed. That cannot be allowed to happen."

Vermont launches first phase of online ordering & delivery of rapid COVID-19 tests

Wed, 01/12/2022 - 10:16am -- tim
Vermont Business Magazine Beginning at 10 am today, Vermonter’s can help ‘test’ a new system for ordering and delivering rapid COVID-19 tests by visiting The program was developed by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and is expected to deliver up to 500,000 recently purchased rapid COVID-19 tests to households across the state in two phases, beginning with 350,000 tests (175,000 kits with two tests each). Details of when the 150,000 additional tests may be made available are still to be determined. The date will be set following review of lessons learned in the first round, the production timeline of the test manufacturer and other considerations.

Bylaw Modernization Grants awarded to 41 Vermont cities and towns

Wed, 01/12/2022 - 10:05am -- tim
Vermont Business Magazine The Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) announced $500,000 in Bylaw Modernization Grants to align regulations that support more homes in great neighborhoods. The funding supports 23 projects in 41 municipalities to explore modernizing regulations and addressing the need for increased housing in downtowns, village centers, and surrounding neighborhoods.