Governor Raimondo

Governor Raimondo and the Department of Health will provide their daily coronavirus disease (COVID-19) update on Friday at 1 pm.

Updates as they happen;

Gov: On Monday, there will be a system in place for reporters to ask follow up questions.

Gov: 54 news cases of COVID-19 in Rhode Island, brings total positive cases in the state to 711. 72 people are now hospitalized because of COVID-19. Two more deaths, fourteen have now died.

Director Of Health: 1 of the people who passed away was a nursing home resident, lived at Golden Crest nursing home in North Providence. Other fatality was not a nursing home resident.

Gov: Field Hospitals – RI Convention Center, former Citizens Bank in Cranston, former Lower’s in Quonest to be used as field hospitals. These will be able to provide an additional 1,000 hospital beds.

Gov: Says Rhode Island is less compliant than national average or neighboring Massachusetts when it comes to social-distancing. People are still not complying with social distancing and stay-at-home orders. Says Rhode Island cut down on movement by 36%, national average is 41%.

Gov: Hopes to share where we are at a state with a model (projections) on Monday. Biggest variable in modeling is compliance to social distancing orders.

Gov: State will continue to suspend child care licenses through the entire month of April.

Gov: New food delivery service is overwhelmed — over 40k requests in one day. Needed by those under quarantine or elderly. If you are young and healthy, please do not use at this time.

Gov: New US Small Business Administration stimulus loan program is now available, encourage RI small businesses to file quickly.

Director Of Health: Public should not be purchasing or hoarding medical-grade face masks. Does encourage public to wear cloth-based face covering in public. Says this can reduce release of infections particles when someone coughs or talks, particularly for those without symptoms. IF you have symptoms, stay home.

National Guard: This is the biggest mobilization of the Rhode Island National Guard in a domestic crisis. There are over 700 soldiers and airmen who have been deployed, with the possibility of 300 more to support RI’s response efforts.

This story will be updated during the press conference and after with more data and information.

Press Release – COVID-19 Announcements Made on Surge Locations, Face Covers, and Other Topics

Governor Gina M. Raimondo and Nicole Alexander-Scott, MD, MPH, the Director of the Rhode Island Department of Health (RIDOH) made several coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) announcements today. 

  • Surge locations: Rhode Islandis setting up surge sites to provide hospital-level care at the Rhode Island Convention Center, the former Citizens Bank building on Sockanosset Cross Road in Cranston, and the former Lowe’s building at Quonset. Once complete, these sites will be staffed and equipped with the medical resources needed to treat more than 1,000 people.
  • Cloth Face Covers: Dr. Alexander-Scott encouraged Rhode Islanders to consider wearing cloth face covers when in public. A cloth face cover is a material that covers the nose and mouth. It can be secured to the head with ties or straps, or wrapped around the lower face. A cloth face cover could be sewn by hand or improvised from household items such as scarves or T-shirts. (Face covers are different than N95 facemasks. People in the general public should not be purchasing or hording medical grade masks, such as N95s.) The primary role of a cloth face cover is to reduce the release of infectious particles into the air when someone speaks, coughs, or sneezes. Cloth face covers are not substitutes for physical distancing, washing your hands, and staying home when ill.
  • Childcare: The state will continue to suspend childcare licenses through the month of April.
  • Mental Health: The Governor announced the establishment of a $5 million COVID-19 Behavioral Health Fund at the Rhode Island Foundation. The funding is made available by local insurance companies as a result of a state compliance review and will be dedicated to fund nonprofit organizations working to address Rhode Islanders’ behavioral health needs resulting from the COVID-19 crisis. Nonprofits who think they can help with these services can apply for funding through the Rhode Island Foundation beginning April 6. Adults seeking mental or behavioral health support should call BH Link at 414-LINK. For services for children, call Kids Link 855-543-5465.
  • Testing: All Rhode Islanders who have symptoms of COVID-19 are urged to call a healthcare provider to get scheduled for a test. The symptoms of COVID-19 include any of these symptoms: fever, cough, shortness of breath, muscle aches (myalgias), chills, runny nose or stuffy nose, sore throat, headache, or diarrhea. COVID-19 testing in Rhode Island had previously been limited to the members of certain priority populations who are more vulnerable to complications from COVID-19 or who are members of Rhode Island’s critical infrastructure workforce.

COVID-19 Data Update

Dr. Alexander-Scott announced today that Rhode Island has 54 new cases of COVID-19. This brings Rhode Island’s count to 711. Dr. Alexander-Scott also announced two additional COVID-19 associated fatalities. One of these individuals was a nursing home resident. That brings Rhode Island’s number of fatalities to 14. A full data summary for Rhode Island is posted online.

Rhode Island Numbers

Last Update: 4/3/2020
Number of Rhode Island COVID-19 positive (including presumptive positive) cases:711
Number of people who had negative test results:4,857
Number of Rhode Island COVID-19 patients who are currently hospitalized77
Number of Rhode Island COVID-19 patients who are currently in intensive care units18
Number of Rhode Island COVID-19 associated fatalities14
DateNew Positive CasesTotal Positive Cases
Age data last updated 4/2/2020
Age GroupRhode Island COVID-19 patients by age:

Note: Zero in an age category indicates either zero patients or less than five patients.

Sex data last updated 4/2/2020
SexRhode Island COVID-19 patients by sex
City/Town data last updated 4/2/2020
City/TownRhode Island COVID-19 patients by city/town of residence
Central Falls11
East Greenwich<5
East Providence21
Little Compton<5
New Shoreham0
North Kingstown10
North Providence61
North Smithfield<5
South Kingstown12
West Greenwich<5
West Warwick12

Note: There may be slight discrepancies between the statewide total and the data at the city and town level because additional time is sometimes needed to identify the permanent place of residence of some COVID-19 patients.

Key messages for the public

  • Anyone who is sick should stay home and self-isolate (unless going out for testing or healthcare).
  • The people who live with that person and who have been in direct close contact with that person should self-quarantine for 14 days. Direct close contact means being within approximately 6 feet of a person for a prolonged period.
  • Help is available for people living in quarantine or isolation due to COVID-19. Visit for connections to groceries, home supplies, restaurants, and mutual aid groups. People can also call 2-1-1. 
  • Groups of more than five people should not be gathering. Always avoid close personal contact with other people in public.
  • Healthcare workers should not be going to work if they are sick (even with mild symptoms).
  • People who think they have COVID-19 should call their healthcare provider. Do not go directly to a healthcare facility without first calling a healthcare provider (unless you are experiencing a medical emergency).
  • People with general, non-medical questions about COVID-19 can visit, write to, or call 401-222-8022. This is the COVID-19 Hotline that RIDOH has available to the public.
  • Everyone can help stop the spread of viruses in Rhode Island.

o    Get your flu shot, and make sure the people around you do the same.

o    Wash your hands often throughout the day. Use warm water and soap. If soap and water are not available, use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.

o    Cough or sneeze into your elbow.

o    Stay home and do not leave your house if you are sick, unless it is for emergency medical care.

o    Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth. Germs spread this way.

Ryan Belmore

Ryan Belmore is the Owner and Publisher of What'sUpNewp.  He has been involved with What’sUpNewp since shortly after its launch in 2012, proudly leading it to be named Best Local News Blog in Rhode Island by Rhode Island Monthly readers in 2018, 2019, and 2020 and an honorable mention in the Common Good Awards in 2021.

He currently serves on the Board of Directors for Potter League For Animals. He previously served on the boards of Fort Adams Trust, Lucy's Hearth, and the Arts & Cultural Alliance for Newport County.

In 2020, he was named Member of the Year by LION and won the Arts & Cultural Alliance of Newport County's Dominque Award.

He is a member of Local Independent Online News (LION) Publishers, the Society of Professional Journalists, and the North American Snowsports Journalists Association.

Born and raised in Rhode Island, he spent 39 years living in Rhode Island before recently moving to Alexandria, Virginia, with his wife and two rescue dogs. He still considers Rhode Island home, and visits at least once a month.