COVID-19: Dartmouth-Hitchcock to inform ‘medically vulnerable’ patients of vaccine eligibility

Valley News Staff Writer
Published: 1/23/2021 12:32:01 AM
Modified: 1/23/2021 11:16:03 AM

LEBANON — Dartmouth-Hitchcock Health is using its electronic medical record system to let New Hampshire health officials know which patients are “medically vulnerable” and therefore qualified to receive a COVID-19 vaccine in the next phase of the state’s rollout, according to a news release from the Lebanon-based health system on Friday.

Dartmouth-Hitchcock will not be vaccinating any of its patients “in the near term,” nor will it be receiving doses to do so. All those who qualify through Phase 1b now are being directed to the state’s 13 fixed sites, according to the release.

New Hampshire’s website, vaccines.nh.gov, for registering to receive a vaccine for those in Phase 1b went live at 8 a.m. Friday. People can also call 211 for information on registering. Vaccinations for this phase are scheduled to begin on Tuesday.

Phase 1b in New Hampshire includes people age 65 and older, those who are between 16 and 65 and medically vulnerable, residents and workers at residential care homes for people with developmental disabilities, corrections workers, first responders, and health workers.

Health care providers have to verify that those who are under age 65 have two or more of a list of several health conditions that may put them at higher risk of developing serious illness should they contract COVID-19. The list, developed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, includes cancer, chronic kidney disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, Down syndrome, heart conditions, immunocompromised states, obesity, pregnancy, sickle cell disease, and Type 2 diabetes mellitus.

D-HH patients in this category will receive an email or a notification through their myD-H portal when D-HH has sent their verification information to the state, according to the release. The only information D-HH will provide to the state will be name, phone number, email address and date of birth. D-HH was prepared to begin submitting that information on Friday, as soon as state officials confirmed they could accept it, according to the release.

Vermonters who receive their care at D-HH are not qualified to receive their vaccines in New Hampshire. Vermont officials said Friday that Vermonters over 75 can begin signing up for vaccinations on Monday at healthvermont.gov/MyVaccine, but have not released an exact time. A phone number will also be released then. Vaccinations for that group are slated to begin on Wednesday, Jan. 27.

Sullivan County nursing home outbreak grows

UNITY — A COVID-19 outbreak at Sullivan County Health Care has grown to include a total of 80, including 49 residents and 31 employees, according to the facility’s administrator.

Ten of the affected workers have recovered and returned to work, Ted Purdy, the Unity nursing home’s administrator, said in a Friday Facebook post. Most of the residents who tested positive this week have no or mild symptoms, such as coughs or congestion, he said. One resident has died in the outbreak thus far.

The facility is scheduled to have its second round of vaccinations on Wednesday. Those who have tested positive but whose symptoms are improving will be able to receive their shots.

Elsewhere in Sullivan County, the Woodlawn Care Center in Newport, which had an outbreak in the fall, reported two new COVID-19 cases, one in an employee and the other in a resident, in a Facebook post on Friday. The worker was last at the facility on Jan. 18 and the resident was on quarantine before testing positive.

‘Probable’ COVID-19 casein Springfield, Vt., school

SPRINGFIELD, Vt. — Students in River Valley Technical Center’s health sciences program shifted to remote learning on Friday as the result of a ‘probable’ COVID-19 case, according to the center’s superintendent.

A probable case is when someone has either tested positive on a rapid antigen test and has symptoms of COVID-19 or if someone has symptoms and has been exposed to someone with the disease. The district is treating this case as a positive until it hears otherwise, said Scott Farr, the technical center’s superintendent and director, in a Thursday evening Facebook post.

School officials cleaned “targeted areas” of Springfield High School on Thursday before reopening for hybrid instruction on Friday. The students in the technical center’s health sciences program will learn remotely until further notice, Farr said.

Nora Doyle-Burr can be reached at ndoyleburr@vnews.com or 603-727-3213.

Clarification

New Hampshire’s Phase 1b includes people age 65 and older. An earlier version of this article was unclear about the low threshold of the age group.




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