Vermont reported 92 new cases of COVID-19 and three more deaths in a briefing Thursday, some of the lowest rates nationwide as vaccine distribution ramps up.
The state reported a seven-day positivity rate of 2.1%, while 22 people remain hospitalized and six are in intensive care units, according to Vermont Commissioner of Health Dr. Mark Levine.
More than 6,382 doses of the vaccine have been administered in the first two weeks, representing about 30% of the more than 21,000 doses currently allocated, Levine said. This mark is signficantly higher than the national average, which stands closer to 10%.
About 11,400 doses of Moderna's vaccine will also arrive soon in the state, meaning there should be aroun 34,000 doses in Vermont around the New Year, according to Levine.
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Vermont officials encouraged residents not to call looking for a vaccine, as those in line will be contacted. The state has also launched an online dashboard to provide ongoing updates and information about vaccine distribution.
Levine said in the near future the vaccine is expected to be provided through doctor's offices, pharmacies and a point of distribution (POD) system. An expanded site for mass vaccinations, similar to current models for testing, is also being discussed, he said.
Gov. Phil Scott began the day's press conference by showing a video out of Mary Hogan Elementary School in Middlebury, Vermont. The school, joining Scott's Lights the Way call to raise positivity during the pandemic, had students create art projects with inspiring messages of hope, which now decorate stores throughout the community.
"It's about being strong, and spreading hope and kindness," one student said in a video played during the press conference.
"This is exactly what Vermont Lights the way is all about," Scott said. "These stories, that's what give me hope."