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Although they were firmly in their home offices, the legislators hit the ground running last week and took up our top priorities of health care workforce, extending regulatory flexibilities and telehealth. The amount of activity during what is usually a “getting up to speed” week speaks volumes. Hopefully we will see even more activity when Governor Scott presents his FY 2023 budget, which is tentatively scheduled for January 18th.
As we close the door on 2021 and look to the new year, here’s what I sadly cannot tell you—that COVID will be gone and life will return to how it was in January of 2020. We are never going back. COVID is here to stay in one form or another. The holiday wave of cases set infection records unimaginable in the early days of the pandemic. With Omicron spreading rapidly, our hospitals face the possibility of another surge of patients in the coming weeks.
Last week was difficult in the health care world, and left many of us searching for bright spots. Among the many ongoing challenges is a stressed health workforce constantly being asked to do more. But that same workforce is also the brightest of bright spots.
With boosters now widely available in Vermont, we hope eligible Vermonters take advantage of this great opportunity to further protect themselves, their families and their communities. Signing up is easy and the Vermont Department of Health has done an incredible job to ensure access to Pfizer boosters for all Vermonters.
Thanks to all who attended our 2021 Annual Meeting, “Forward Together.” We were pleased so many of you joined us even though it could not be in person. This year, we were proud to host the following presentations: Keynote speaker Aron Ralston told the harrowing story of cutting off his own arm to…
We're excited to welcome Aron Ralston as our keynote speaker at the 2021 VAHHS Annual Meeting: Forward Together. Aron Ralston's extraordinary story of survival after an 800-pound boulder trapped him in a remote Utah canyon captured global headlines in 2003. In his New York Times best seller, Between…
Good news alert! I feel the need to open with that announcement given the barrage of challenges we face in health care and the unending pandemic twists and turns we continue to manage. Good news in health care can easily be dwarfed by stories of heartache and sorrow, yet if you simply look around, there…
What a week. Vermont’s hospitals have just completed their fiscal 2022 budget hearings before the Green Mountain Care Board (GMCB). As I reflect on the hours of hearings—I observe every one of them—I am filled with both immense pride and continued concern for the well-being of our hospitals and the beleaguered…
VAHHS 2021 Legislative Session Summary Back in January, as I worked with hospitals on setting up vaccine clinics, procuring testing supplies, and other COVID-related responses, I hoped against hope that the legislature would limit their activity to COVID issues. Of course, not even Zoom squares can…
Home stretch, last mile, red zone … choose your metaphor, but here in Vermont we are almost ready to return to life as we knew it before the pandemic. Ready for summer barbecues and concerts? Excited to host friends you haven’t seen in more than a year? Eager for a cocktail party with no masks or social…