coronavirus in Rhode Island

Governor Raimondo and the Department of Health will hold their daily COVID-19 press briefing today at 1 pm.

What’s Up Newp will carry it live here, and provide updates, as it happens.

Latest Data

May 7th: 325 new positive cases (total now 10,530), 18 new associated fatalities (total now 388), 318 currently hospitalized, 82 currently in ICU, 56 currently on a ventilator.

Press Briefing

YouTube video

Updates From The Press Briefing

Gov: “We wish the numbers were going down,” but reminds Rhode Islanders that numbers today should not alarm you. Believe the higher case count is a result of testing more vulnerable communities.

Gov: The stay at home order will be liftend on Saturday. Phase 1 to reopening economy will begin. Visit for details.

Gov: Judging data in 3 day increments. Cites recent 15% drop in new hospitalizations among other data / decrease of 5 admissions per day versus 14 days ago. New cases: Decrease of 95 cases per day versus 14 days ago.

Gov: Because the 7 triggers have been met we will enter Phase I. Phase I begins on Saturday. Social distancing and masks still a requirement. Do not congregate. If you work from home and can, you should continue to do so.

Gov: Hospitals will begin resuming non-critcal procedures starting next week. All hospitals have submitted extensive plans to the state to ensure the safety of patients.

Gov: DEM website will list what state parks are opening in phase I.

Gov: In phase I, social gatherings are still limited to just 5 people. That restriction will last until May 22nd.

The following orders will extend thru May 22nd.

  • Domestic Travel: Anyone coming to Rhode Island must self quarantine for 14 days. The restriction doesn’t apply to those Rhode Islanders
  • Restaurant Dine In – Remains closed for Phase I. Gov. hopes to let restaurants add limited outdoor dining at end of Phase I. Restaurants can now sell wine, beer, and mixed drinks in sealed containers with takeout food orders.
  • Entertainment venues/business (mobies, bowling alleys, gyms, barbers, salons, tattoo shops, etc) will remain closed for now.
  • More details on restrictions on

Gov: says the “gold standard” right now is “don’t leave the house if you feel sick, put face mask on/keep it with you, keep away from other people, minimum six feet apart.

The following orders will extend thru June 5th.

  • International travelers must quarantine for 14 days.
  • Anyone diagnosed with COVID-19 must isolate until cleared.
  • Gun background checks remain 30 days.
  • Telehealth – Health insurers must cover teleheath.

Gov: During Phase I, places of worship can open for groups of five or fewer.

Gov: During Phase I, funerals can happen with up to 10 people as long as all are property social distanced.

Gov: How long are we going to be in phase I? “I don’t know”. Plans to touch base on that next week. Hope is 14 days.

Director of Health: 18 new additional deaths. Ages range form 60’s to more than 100-years-old. 14 of those who died lived in long-term care facilities. Two of the deaths were residents at the R.I. Veterans Home.

Director of Health: Number changes day by day but state average says that 70% of Rhode Island’s COVID-19 associated deaths have happened at congregate care settings.

Press release with today’s updates from Governor Raimondo

Raimondo Announces Stay-at-home Order will Lift Saturday, Extends Executive Orders

Governor Gina M. Raimondo today announced that Rhode Island’s stay-at-home order will lift this Saturday, May 9th.

Phase 1 will begin with the following restrictions:

  • Non-critical retail stores will reopen with capacity limits.
  • Elective medical procedures resume under safety guidelines.
  • Everyone who can work from home, should work from home. Offices will be permitted to start allowing people to come and go on a very limited basis.
  • Some state parks will reopen with limited parking.

Tomorrow, the Governor will issue a new executive order extending the ban on social gatherings of five people until May 22nd. In addition, the following orders will extend through May 22nd:

  • Domestic Travel: Anyone coming to Rhode Island from any other state for a non-work-related purpose by any mode of transportation must self-quarantine for 14 days. This restriction will not apply to anyone traveling for medical treatment or to obtain necessities like groceries, gas, or medication.
  • Restaurant dine-in: Restaurants, bars, and cafes will remain closed to dine-in service. Wine and beer can still be sold with take-out orders. In addition, starting Saturday, restaurants and bars will be allowed to sell mixed drinks in sealed containers.
  • Businesses closures: Recreation and entertainment businesses will remain closed. This includes theaters, cinemas, bowling alleys, concert venues, museums, and zoos. Close-contact businesses will also remain closed. This includes gyms, fitness centers, yoga studios, hair salons, nail salons, barber shops, and tattoo parlors.

In addition, the following executive orders will be extended to June 5th:

  • International Travel: Anyone coming to Rhode Island from outside of the country must self-quarantine for 14 days.
  • Quarantining: Anyone who has been diagnosed with coronavirus by a lab test or by a doctor who has assessed symptoms must isolate until cleared based on guidance from the Rhode Island Department of Health (RIDOH). 
  • Gun Permits: In keeping with a request from the Rhode Island Police Chiefs’ Association, the state has extended the time period that law enforcement has to complete a background for a gun permit from seven days to 30 days.
  • Telehealth: Health insurers must cover telemedicine for primary care, specialty care and mental and behavioral health care.

In Phase 1, places of worship will be allowed to reopen for groups of five only. Drive-in services are allowed as long as people remain in their cars. Funerals will be allowed to have a maximum of 10 people, as long as they are appropriately socially distanced. More guidance for religious settings will be available on tomorrow. 

COVID-19 Data Update 

RIDOH announced 325 new cases of COVID-19 today. This brings Rhode Island’s case count to 10,530. RIDOH also announced 18 new COVID-19 associated fatalities. Rhode Island’s number of COVID-19 associated fatalities is now 388. A full data summary for Rhode Island is posted online.

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 after the last day that that person was in isolation. 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. 
  • When people are in public, they should wear a cloth face covering. A cloth face covering is a material that covers the nose and mouth. It could be sewn by hand or improvised from household items such as scarves, T-shirts, or bandanas.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • Cough or sneeze into your elbow.
  • Stay home and do not leave your house if you are sick, unless it is for emergency medical care.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth. Germs spread this way.

This story is developing and will be updated throughout the press briefing and day.

What's Up Newp

Your local, independent source for What’s Up in Newport, Rhode Island, and beyond. Est. 2012