Vermont health officials on Tuesday reported 37 new COVID-19 cases, bringing the total number of people who have tested positive for the virus to 293. The number of deaths in the state rose by one to a total of 13.
The latest death was the third since the weekend at Pinecrest at Essex, a 55-and-over apartment complex in Essex Junction. Two of the people who died, including the most recent person, were residents; one was the significant other of an employee at the facility.
Health Commissioner Mark Levine said the Health Department is advising Pinecrest residents to stay out of common rooms, such as the laundry and mail rooms. He said those who have had contact with confirmed cases have been isolated and told to contact their doctor if they develop symptoms
The number of new cases reported Tuesday are the most in a single day since the global outbreak first reached Vermont on March 7. The increase may be an indication of the state’s increased testing capacity.
Late last week, Health Commissioner Mark Levine announced that “strategic procurement” of test kits and related supplies would allow the state to test more Vermonters who have mild or moderate symptoms of COVID-19. On Sunday, the Vermont National Guard opened a drive-through testing center in Putney, on the campus of Landmark College.
State officials continue to investigate a deadly outbreak at Burlington Health & Rehab, a long-term care facility where at least six residents have died after testing positive for COVID-19.
Also on Monday, Gov. Phil Scott directed anyone entering the to self-quarantine for two weeks and asked out-of-state resdidents to refrain from visiting Vermont unless they have to.
The governor also ordered all hotels, bed & breakfasts, campgrounds and short-term rentals like AirBnBs to close, and he suspended online lodging reservation systems.
The governor ordered VTrans and the Vermont and the Department of Motor Vehicles to post the new travel guidelines at major points of entry into the state, on highway message boards and at Burlington International Airport and other Vermont airports.
“This will help protect those currently in the state while allowing people who own a home or have a family to be here as well,” Scott said. “As Americans we’re all in this together, and we all have a role in keeping everyone safe.”