Happy New Year to you all. Thank you for your patience, kindness and resilience through the eventful last year! I’m feeling deep gratitude for our family’s health and our ability to be together with all three of our children and both of our grand puppies over the December holidays. We are looking forward to our son in law returning home from deployment in the coming weeks/month.
A few of my favorite memories from 2021:
2022 looks like it will have a wild start with the highly contagious omicron COVID-19 variant. Like you, I’m hearing national and state health experts express a sense that many people are going to become infected. We also see clear evidence that vaccines and boosters are working to reduce serious illness and death.
As of 12/31, we also know that a large percentage of the unvaccinated in Vermont are children and young adults. Hopefully your student is able to test prior to going back to school, and if they are positive they stay home. Please wear masks inside to help protect our youngest Vermonters and our healthcare capacity and please quarantine if you are sick.
With so many likely becoming sick, we may see a few intense weeks. I will not be surprised to hear some businesses have closed temporarily or that some public services have been disrupted temporarily. Right now Vermont’s healthcare system appears to have the requisite capacity of manned hospital and ICU beds to manage an uptick in hospitalizations. Keep in mind we will be watching two numbers in this regard – the number of hospitalizations and the number of healthcare workers who are not sick and are able to work.
You can help hospitals and schools by getting vaccinated, getting boosted, quarantining when sick and by wearing your mask in public.
- Where to get tested
- Vermont COVID-19 Self-Test Result Reporting Form
- Unemployment coverage for those who are sick or quarantining
When the legislature convenes this coming week, we may see proposals to increase mitigation measures. Mitigation measures that I would be likely to vote for – depending on the exact proposal – and only until vaccines are available for under 5 are:
- mandatory indoor masking
- mandatory vaccines for staff and students for in person learning in public school
IF YOU HAVE A POSITIVE TEST (PCR, LAMP, OR ANTIGEN) REGARDLESS OF VACCINATION STATUS
- Stay home and isolate for 5 days.
You can leave your home on day 5 if:
- You never had symptoms, or your symptoms have improved and you feel better
- AND you have had no fever for at least 24 hours without the use of medicine that reduces fevers
- AND you wear a mask around others through day 10.
- AND, when possible, it is recommended that you have two negative antigen tests performed at least 24 hours apart beginning no earlier than day 4
- Notify your close contacts that you have tested positive.
As we begin this new year, I will be doubling down on my efforts to listen carefully and respectfully, to look people in the eye and make human connections and to say thank you to all Vermonter’s working so hard to save our fellow Vermonters lives.
Tomorrow evening I will be sending out a preview of the 2022 Legislative Session.
As always, if you have suggestions, concerns or critiques please be in touch so we can schedule time to discuss. Please do not hesitate to contact me if you need assistance navigating government services. Call me at (802) 384-0233 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow my regular posts online at http://www.laurasibiliavt.com
Rep. Laura Sibilia Dover, Readsboro, Searsburg, Somerset, Stamford, Wardsboro, Whitingham