Vermont's Coronavirus Case Count Reaches 461 | Off Message

Vermont's Coronavirus Case Count Reaches 461


  • Courtney Lamdin
  • A test kit
Updated 6 p.m.

Vermont reported 71 new coronavirus cases on Saturday, bringing the state's total infection count to 461. Three more people have died.

The new positive cases represent about 12 percent of the 616 total test results reported on Saturday. That's the highest single-day test count since March 29, when the state reported 1,327 new results. Vermont recently expanded testing to patients with mild and moderate symptoms.

The state's death toll now stands at 20. Two of the three people reported dead on Saturday were patients at Southwestern Vermont Medical Center in Bennington, Vermont Department of Health spokesperson Ben Truman said.

The other was a resident at Birchwood Terrace nursing home in Burlington, where 26 residents have been diagnosed with COVID-19. One employee there has also tested positive.

Meanwhile, the outbreak at Burlington Health & Rehabilitation Center continues to grow. On Saturday, after testing for all but one resident was complete, the center reported 10 additional cases among residents. Many of these positive patients are asymptomatic, according to Genesis HealthCare spokesperson Lori Mayer.

"We have cohorted or separated residents appropriately based on the results and recommendations by the Department of Health," she said.

Mayer would not say whether the facility plans to test all staff, writing in an email that Genesis was working with the health department "to determine next steps." Fourteen have tested positive, bringing the center's total case count to 46.

Nearly 16 percent of all coronavirus cases in Vermont stem from these two eldercare facilities.

Demographic data for the six dozen new cases was not immediately available.

Health officials estimate the state's total cases will peak in late April or early May. Gov. Phil Scott said Friday he expects to extend his stay-at-home order beyond April 15, when it's currently set to expire.

Vermont officials have also recommended that even asymptomatic people wear masks in public in accordance with recent guidance from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The best way to slow the spread is to practice social distancing, according to the CDC.

Andrea Suozzo contributed data analysis.

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