Coronavirus: 24 children in Vermont test positive after new outbreak

New spike in cases believed to be linked to family's social network as state begins reopening

Alex Woodward
New York
Monday 08 June 2020 14:47
Coronavirus in numbers

Health officials in Vermont have identified a recent outbreak of coronavirus impacting 62 people, including 24 children.

The cases — impacting people from one year old to 64 — were identified on Sunday. The median age among new patients is 21 years old. One in five infected people reported symptoms, though a majority didn't know they were affected.

Health officials did not report any hospitalisations or deaths but expect the number of cases to continue to rise in coming days.

Though the state is experiencing an uptick in new cases, the rate of positive cases remains relatively low, according to Vermont health commissioner Mark Levine. At least 895 people have recovered, and 55 people have died. The state's death toll has remained stagnant for several weeks.

A cluster of new cases in Winooski was first identified two weeks ago, but health officials believe it spread to nearby Burlington and surrounding areas.

Officials are working to determine the links among cases, though it's believed that many cases are linked to one social network of families.

The spike in cases arrives as the state begins to reopen to some activity, including organised recreational sports, which are scheduled to resume on 15 June.

On Monday, Vermont restaurants and bars were allowed to resume inside seating with 25 per cent of their capacity and with physical distancing in place between tables, and interstate travel is reopening to other parts of the region.

Dr Levine assured residents that "no matter who you are or where you live, you can still walk the streets of Winooski and Burlington, or any other community in Vermont" but urged residents to "please continue to take the same precautions we have been advising all along."

"Wear a facial covering, keep a six foot distance from others, wash your hands a lot, and of course if you are feeling ill, stay home," he said.

Nearly 2 million Covid-19 cases have been identified in the US since the onset of its outbreak. At least 110,724 people have died, according to Johns Hopkins University data.

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