“Your Honor, don’t send me to jail, I’m vulnerable to Covid-19,” Vermont judges are hearing from defendants.
"During testimony, Vermont’s former medical director for Vermont's Department Corrections, Delores “Dr. Dee” Burroughs-Biron, was critical of the ability of current prison medical personnel to care for inmates sick with COVID-19. She described the 2019 death of an inmate who had a tumor obstructing his ability to breathe. She said she had reviewed the case and video of the man’s decline in the infirmary of the prison in Newport, Vermont. “There was no appearance from looking at the videos that they were clinically capable of taking care of the gentleman in the manner that was necessary for the emergency that was evolving at that time,” she said, and noted that staff did not take him to an emergency room when they should have. “It raised a concern as to how this will be carried out in the current crisis — respiratory distress being a huge part of what the COVID pandemic, and deaths during the COVID pandemic, have been about,” she said, adding respiratory distress comes on suddenly for many COVID-19 patients."
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