Governor Raimondo

Governor Raimondo and the Department of Health will provide updates to reporters about Rhode Island’s coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) response today at 1 pm.

Updates as they happen;

The most recent data

Governor: Says increase in deaths and cases was expected and we are not out of the woods. Reminds Rhode Islanders that stay-at-home order is in place until May 8th.

Gov: Says these next two weeks are critical weeks. Rhode Island should continue acts of heroism.

Gov: On Rhode Island modeling effort, it’s a combination of what we know about the virus about other countries and communities that are ahead of us and the actual Rhode Island experience (what’s actually happening in our community). “It’s not a perfect model or predictor of where we are going”.

Model, which is based off of hospitalization rates, predicts the higher scenario would see 4,300 beds being needed/peak on April 27th. The best estimate as of April 16th would see 2,250 beds being used/peak on May 3rd. 2,250 hospital beds would fit into current hospitals (not using field hospitals). The 4,300 would be the number if we stopped taking social distancing seriously. Says state is working hard to make sure state has that many beds if they are needed. Governor says one week ago the higher scenario was 6,000 – 7,000 beds were going to be needed.

Governor says she doesn’t think blue line will happen, based on current adherence to social distancing orders etc.

Governor says when the economy does open, the number will go up because more people are together /relaxed social distancing.

Governor hoped to announce plans for schools this week, holding off on announcement until next week. “This is a huge decision”. “I’m not ready to throw in the towel on the rest of the school year”, says she is watching data and will make an announcement next week. Distance Learning continues until end of April.

Gov: 160,000 Rhode Islanders have filed for unemployment insurance so far. Ther eare 2,000+ job openings in fields critical to the response. Gov: Today, State is launching employment matching tool of companies that are hiring immediately.

Director of Health: On 18 new fatalities, 7 in 70s, 7 in 80s, 4 in 90’s. All 18 were in congregate care settings. Nine deaths happened yesterday, others occurred previously and results were delayed for various reasons.

Director of Health: Oak Hill Center in Pawtucket as a COVID-19 specialty nursing home. Will accept patients discharged from hospital who are COVID-19 positive, but no longer require care from hospital. Oak Hill nursing home residents will be kept separate from those discharged from the hospital, she says. All residents at other nursing homes across the state will continue to stay where they are, including COVID-19 patients.

Director of Health: It looks like Latinos represent about 45% of all positive cases in Rhode Island, according to preliminary numbers. Efforts underway to test in city areas.

In response to reporter question, Governor says the blue line (in model) predicts approximately 2,120 deaths from now thru October. The red line predicts approximately 4,015 deaths from now thru October.

This story is developing and will be updated.

COVID-19 Daily Update – April 16: COVID-19 associated deaths up to 105; state model projects total hospitalizations and deaths