Everything You Need to Know About COVID-19 in Rhode Island
The state is no longer reporting a percent positivity rate in its COVID data.
RECENT COVID-19 UPDATES
- As of Wednesday, April 20, the Rhode Island Department of Health is no longer reporting a percent positivity rate as part of its COVID-19 data. State officials say the data has become harder to interpret as more testing takes place at home or in traditional health care settings and state-run testing sites focus on symptomatic people.
- Most public transportation systems are no longer enforcing a mask mandate after a federal judge in Florida struck down the requirement. RIPTA announced on Tuesday it is lifting its mask mandate.
- Cases in Rhode Island have climbed slightly since late March, though the number of deaths from COVID-19 remains low.
- People age fifty and older, those with compromised immune systems and anyone who received the Johnson and Johnson vaccine are now eligible to receive a second booster shot.
On Friday, April 22, the state reported no new fatalities and 304 cases of COVID-19 from Thursday.
- Rhode Island had 208.6 new cases of COVID-19 per 100,000 people in the last week.
- Sixty-one people are currently hospitalized with COVID-19, including three people in the ICU and five people on ventilators.
- 3,532 people have died from COVID-19 in Rhode Island since the start of the pandemic
- 368,246 positive cases of COVID-19 have been reported in Rhode Island since the start of the pandemic
(Charts from the Rhode Island Department of Health)
THE COVID-19 VACCINE
- BOOSTER SHOTS: All Rhode Islanders age 12 and older who completed their primary vaccination schedule at least six months ago are now eligible for Pfizer (age 12 and older) or Moderna (age 18 and older) boosters.
- Rhode Island parents can sign up their young children, ages five to eleven, for Pfizer-BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine
- Visit VaccinateRI.org or call 844-930-1779 to schedule a vaccination appointment.
- The dosing schedule is two shots, three weeks apart.
- Click here for a list of community vaccination clinics.
- In Pfizer-BioNTech’s main clinical trial of 2,248 participants, the vaccine appeared to be 90.3 percent effective against symptomatic COVID-19 for ages five to eleven.
- No cases of myocarditis, or heart inflammation, were detected in the trial
- View and print your vaccine record here: portal.ri.gov/vaccinerecord/s
- The Rhode Island Department of Health in February announced new strategies for testing as the state transitions to a long-term “endemic strategy.”
- State-run test sites shifted focus as of March 7 to people who have symptoms of COVID-19 or had close contact with someone who tested positive.
- People who are asymptomatic and aren’t a close contact or who need testing for travel are encouraged to seek testing through pharmacies, clinics, primary care providers or at-home test kits.
- Visit portal.ri.gov to schedule a test at a state-run test site.
- Residents can sign up to receive free at-home COVID-19 tests through the U.S. Postal Service. Each household is eligible to receive four rapid antigen tests, and tests are expected to ship within 7 to 12 days. Sign up here
- Many CVS and Walgreens pharmacies offer COVID-19 testing by appointment. Sign up on their websites.
- Click here for a list of respiratory clinics that may also offer COVID-19 testing. Call first or go online to make an appointment.
- Report self-test results to the RIDOH at portal.ri.gov.
- Travelers are no longer required to wear a mask in airports and on most public transportation, though the RIDOH is still recommending it.
- Domestic travelers: Regardless of vaccination status, travelers visiting or returning to Rhode Island are not currently required to quarantine or get tested. The Rhode Island Department of Health is recommending all travelers follow the quarantine and testing guidance from the CDC, which includes getting a test and quarantining for seven days after travel (for unvaccinated travelers) or monitoring for COVID-19 symptoms (for vaccinated travelers).
- International travelers: Anyone traveling into the United States by plane, regardless of citizenship or vaccination status, must currently show proof of a negative COVID-19 test taken no more than one day before travel to the United States. Travelers who are not U.S. citizens or permanent residents must also show proof of vaccination. Read more about Rhode Island travel restrictions here.
Rent relief options for tenants and landlords
- Renters in arrears and/or at risk of eviction may qualify for rent relief and utilities assistance through RIHousing
- Financial services are available for renters and landlords
COVID-19 in Rhode Island: FAST FACTS
- .Symptoms include cough, fever, shortness of breath and lost of taste and/or smell
- Visit the RIDOH COVID-19 information portal for guidance on making coronavirus-related health care decisions based on CDC guidelines.
- If you’re showing symptoms, call your health care provider first; if you don’t have one, contact a nearby urgent care.
- Call 401-222-8022 with general questions about COVID-19 or visit the Rhode Island Department of Health website for the latest information
- Call Rhode Island’s BH Link at 401-414-5465 if you need mental health help or are struggling with substance abuse; for children, call Kids’ Link at 1-855-543-5465
Editor’s note: This story is updated frequently.