COVID-19 testing options expand in Vermont
Health Commissioner Mark Levine, MD, announced on Tuesday that Kinney Drugs will begin offering COVID-19 testing at 11 locations in Vermont in the next few weeks.
Kinney Drugs, which is partnering with UVM Medical Center in the new effort, joins Walgreens in Essex Junction in testing options offered by pharmacies. These locations will be added as they become available to the Test Site Finder at the bottom of the Health Department’s Testing page.
The Health Department is also using a new online system for its test sites that makes it easier for people to receive their results. Those who get tested at one of the pop-up sites listed can now receive their results by email, which is more easily accessible while still protecting patient privacy.
Just like at our pop-ups, testing is totally free at the pharmacy sites.
You may be asked for insurance information when you register for testing, but that is only so the state can be reimbursed for the costs by the insurer.
Dr. Levine pointed out that more than 146,000 people have now been tested in Vermont. “We know many Vermonters want to do the right thing to protect their friends and family, and for some people the urge is to get tested.” However, he cautioned, while anyone can get tested, not everyone needs to get tested.
“Testing is not prevention, and a negative test does not necessarily mean it’s safe to gather with others.” Dr. Levine said.
“The best way to protect yourself from COVID-19, and keep our schools and economy open, is to follow those key prevention practices: wear a mask and keep a 6 foot distance from others, avoid crowded indoor spaces, wash your hands a lot, and stay home when you’re sick,” Dr. Levine said.
The Health Department recommends testing if you have symptoms of the virus, if you have had close contact with someone who may have the virus (within 6 feet for about 15 minutes or more), or if you are referred by your health care provider for another reason. If you think you should be tested, talk with your health care provider.
Vermont marks the first day of school
Governor Phil Scott said that as students returned to school Tuesday, things would look and feel much different.
“But the start of the school year is still exciting for kids,” Gov. Scott said. “I wish all students the very best as they start the new year… We’re here to work with schools as we take this step forward, to respond to, and contain cases, just as we have throughout this pandemic.”
Find back-to-school resources on our Schools, Colleges and Child Care Programs web page, including What Parents Can Expect this school year.
You can also learn what happens if there is a case of COVID-19 in a school in our Frequently Asked Questions.
New on healthvermont.gov
Vermont’s contact tracers have interviewed 96% of people with COVID-19 within 24 hours of receiving the test result. This turnaround time ensures people can isolate themselves quickly and tracers can identify and reach out to anyone who was potentially exposed.
Learn more about how we measure our contact tracing efforts in latest Weekly Summary of Vermont COVID-19 Data, with a spotlight on Contact Tracing.
Current COVID-19 Activity in Vermont
As of 12 p.m. on September 8, 2020
|Hospitalized under investigation||3|
|Total people recovered||1,465|
|People completed monitoring||8,041|
* Includes testing conducted at the Health Department Laboratory, commercial labs and other public health labs.
+ Death occurring in persons known to have COVID-19. Death certificate may be pending.
Hospitalization data is provided by the Vermont Healthcare Emergency Preparedness Coalition and is based on hospitals updating this information.
Find more at the data dashboard: healthvermont.gov/currentactivity.
Guidance for Vermonters
Get the information you need at our Frequently Asked Questions.
- If you are having a medical emergency, call 9-1-1 or go to the hospital.
- If you think you have symptoms of COVID-19, call your health care provider.
- Maintain physical distancing of at least 6 feet and wear a mask when near others.
Getting Tested for COVID-19
Anyone can get tested, but not everyone needs to get tested.
Talk with your health care provider If you think you should be tested for COVID-19.
- If you don’t have a provider, dial 2-1-1, or contact the nearest federally qualified health center or one of Vermont’s free & referral clinics.
Visit our testing web page for more guidance and where to get tested if you do need it.
Visit our Travel to Vermont web page for continually updated information and guidance, including about quarantine requirements, testing, and to sign up with Sara Alert for symptom check reminders.
Visit the Agency of Commerce and Community Development’s website for “Work Safe” guidance, which is updated regularly.
Take Care of Your Emotional and Mental Health
If you or someone you know is in crisis or needs emotional support, help is available 24/7:
- Call your local mental health crisis line.
- Call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.
- Text VT to 741741 to talk with someone at the Crisis Text Line.
- For more information visit healthvermont.gov/suicide.
Get self-help tips and connect to mental health services at COVID Support VT.
See ways for Coping with Stress.
For more information: