Massachusetts vaccinations up as Vermont eyes mask rules

Massachusetts News
New England (Athena / Pexels)

New England (Athena / Pexels)

BOSTON (AP) — In New England, COVID developments are again changing how residents interact with the world. In Massachusetts, more than half the population is now fully vaccinated from COVID-19, according to public health data released Saturday.

Nearly 7.8 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine have been administered in Massachusetts as of Saturday. That includes more than 4.1 million first doses and nearly 3.4 million second doses of the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines.

There have been more than 249,000 doses of the one-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine administered, and more than 3.6 million people have been fully immunized in the state. The number of new daily cases of COVID-19 increased by about 200 Saturday while the number of newly confirmed deaths in Massachusetts rose by nine.

There have been more than 249,000 doses of the one-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine administered, and more than 3.6 million people have been fully immunized in the state. The number of new daily cases of COVID-19 increased by about 200 Saturday while the number of newly confirmed deaths in Massachusetts rose by nine.

The new numbers pushed the state’s confirmed COVID-19 death toll to 17,504 since the start of the pandemic, while its confirmed caseload rose to about 661,000. The true number of cases is likely higher because studies suggest some people can be infected and not feel sick.

There were about 240 people reported hospitalized Saturday because of confirmed cases of COVID-19, with about 70 in intensive care units. The average age of those hospitalized was 59.

In Vermont, the capital city plans to lift its indoor mask mandate on June 15. The Montpelier City Council voted Wednesday to do away with the mandate that’s been in place for nearly a year.

City Manager Bill Fraser and Assistant City Manager Cameron Niedermayer wanted guidance from other communities. “We did reach out to other localities that put mandates in place. Most of them are still in place and will remain in place, they told me, until the governor’s state of emergency is rescinded,” Niedermayer said.

The South Burlington City Council revoked their mask mandate Tuesday night, while council members in Vergennes voted to leave their mandate in place. Burlington decided to keep its mandate while the city council will discuss the issue again on June 7.

Gov. Phil Scott says if Vermont reaches 80% of eligible people vaccinated, he will drop the remaining virus mandates. He said he expects that could happen this coming week.

Statewide, Connecticut has reported more than 347,000 COVID-19 cases, and the numbers have varied considerably by county. Fairfield County has recorded the most, nearly 100,000 cases, since the start of the pandemic, followed by New Haven with nearly 92,000 and Hartford with nearly 84,000, according to state health data.

The remaining counties had considerably fewer cases. New London has reported more than 22,000 COVID-19 cases, followed by Litchfield with more than 14,000 cases, Middlesex with nearly 13,000, Windham with nearly 11,000, and Tolland with about 9,500.

Meanwhile, New Hampshire is moving toward making it easier for paramedics and others to become nursing assistants to address workforce shortages exacerbated by the coronavirus pandemic. The Senate passed a bill Thursday that would allow certain military personnel, emergency medical technicians, and paramedics to take the licensed nursing assistant exam without having to take the standard courses. The bill passed the House last month. It now goes to the governor’s desk.

Rhode Islanders who’ve lost or misplaced their COVID-19 vaccine record — or simply want another — can get a free copy from the state. Residents can get the document through portal.ri.gov/VaccineRecord. From this website, residents can search for and print proof of their COVID-19 vaccination. If the individual needs a second dose of vaccine, the record will tell them when they’re eligible for the second dose.

Only people who have received their COVID-19 vaccination in Rhode Island will be able to look up their vaccination records online. Those having trouble finding their vaccination record online can call (401) 222-8022 for help.

And in Maine, officials continue to make progress in vaccinating as many residents as possible against COVID-19. As of Saturday, more than 1.4 million vaccine doses have been administered in the state. More than 59% of the population has received both doses. More than 715,000 first doses have been administered with about 699,000 final doses.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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