Vermont's Covid levels ‘low’ as national levels flatline

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Vermont’s Covid-19 community levels were “low” in the past week, the state Department of Health reported Wednesday.

The number of cases, hospital admissions and people in Vermont hospitals for Covid have remained relatively flat in recent weeks as XBB became the dominant strain in Vermont. The state reported 42 hospital admissions for Covid in the past week, compared with 41 the week before, according to the department.

As of Wednesday, 30 people were hospitalized in Vermont for Covid, including one in intensive care, according to the health department.

The department reported 433 Covid cases in the past week, compared with 495 cases the week before. Covid cases are mainly based on PCR test data and do not include at-home antigen testing.

The number of people coming to emergency departments with Covid symptoms is almost exactly the same as February 2022 when the state was recovering from the peak of the Omicron wave, according to the department data.

The average daily hospital admissions for Covid this month was a little lower than it was in February 2022 — down to about six per day from about 10 per day, according to the department. Covid cases were far lower, currently at about 65 per day from about 200 per day, but it’s unclear how antigen testing might have influenced those figures.

At a national level, Covid cases and hospitalizations have fallen for the past few weeks, The New York Times reported. States in the Northeast have reported double-digit declines in hospitalizations, except for Maine, which reported a slight uptick.

Most Vermont counties had “low” Covid community levels in the past week, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control. The sole exception was Bennington County, which reported “medium” levels for the fourth week in a row.

Both the CDC and Vermont Department of Health’s Covid levels are based on Covid cases, hospital admissions and the percent of state hospital beds taken up by Covid patients.

The department reported seven additional Covid deaths this week, bringing February’s total up to 15. In total, 917 people have died of Covid in Vermont since the beginning of the pandemic.

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Erin Petenko

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