By Guy Page
At today’s press conference, Vermont Daily asked both Gov. Phil Scott and Health Commissioner Mark Levine: “As you look back on these unprecedented 10 months and analyze your leadership in fighting the pandemic, what would you have done differently?”
Neither leader would address specifics. Both said they’re open to learning from mistakes.
“It may be a little too early to look back. We’re still looking forward,” Scott said. “At this point in time, we’re doing everything we think is right. There are times we don’t make the right decisions, but we are learning from others. I think we have done a pretty good job here in Vermont, due to Vermonters being compliant and following the guidelines.”
When the pandemic crisis is over, Vermont will look back to determine what lessons were learned that will help in the next crisis, the governor said. He concluded, “There’s always ways to do things better in retrospect.”
Levine: “Certainly most of the evaluations we get from the outside are not harshly critical of the approach.” Each state has its own approach, and when it’s over these approaches will be evaluated for learning purposes, he said.
“If there is one thing we do – we approach every day with humility,” Levine said. “We’re willing to learn from everybody. We don’t know everything.”
People need to know that when the pandemic began, “we were all writing the playbook….there was not much to go on, except good public health guidelines.” As an example he cited the policy and practices regarding this month’s initial vaccination: “all of those playbooks (on vaccination) were being written in a 72 hour period. It’s that kind of process.”