Vermont rethinking COVID testing strategy

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Published: Nov. 6, 2020 at 4:01 PM EST
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MONTPELIER, Vt. (WCAX) - Vermont health officials are recommending anyone gathering for the holidays get tested afterwards, and the state is also planning to adjust its testing strategy.

Vt. Human Services Secretary Mike Smith Friday said they’ve been looking at whether the testing strategy works for Vermonters. He says they’re doing upwards of 30,000 tests a week -- most of them in schools -- and they want to make it easier for people to get a test if they need one.

“Testing on demand that’s at the convenience of the Vermonter and not basically the provider, so we’ll see seven days a week testing opportunities. We’ll see locations throughout the state. It’s going to take us a while to build this capacity up, but I think you’ll start to see it roll out in the next few weeks,” Smith said

Another strategy will be greater surveillance testing of larger populations. Right now, Vermont is doing surveillance testing in prisons and long-term-care sites but Smith says they’ll be expanding it to “fairly significant populations.” They’re still figuring out who those will be in order to give health experts the best data on virus activity in the state.

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