Governor Gina M. Raimondo announced today that Rhode Island has entered into a partnership with CVS Health to make free, rapid COVID-19 tests available to Rhode Islanders, doubling the state's testing capacity. Tests using the new Abbott ID NOW system will be provided by-appointment at a new drive-through testing site at Twin River Casino in Lincoln. This testing site will be able to perform approximately 1,000 tests per day.
Rhode Island and Georgia are the only two states in the country to be launching this new partnership today. Healthcare providers from MinuteClinic, CVS's retail medical clinic, are overseeing the testing. Rhode Islanders who have symptoms of COVID-19 can sign up for a test at www.cvs.com.
The symptoms of COVID-19 include any of the following: fever, cough, shortness of breath, muscle aches (myalgias), chills, runny nose or stuffy nose, sore throat, headache, or diarrhea.
As Rhode Island has ramped up its testing capacity, Governor Raimondo announced last week that tests are now available for all Rhode Islanders who are experiencing symptoms. COVID-19 testing had previously been limited to certain populations who are more vulnerable to complications from COVID-19 and to Rhode Island's critical infrastructure workforce.
Separate from testing through CVS Health at Twin River Casino, Rhode Islanders who have symptoms can still call their healthcare providers to coordinate testing for COVID-19. People can also call urgent care centers. A number of urgent care centers and primary care providers in Rhode Island have set up separate areas that serve as Respiratory Clinics, meaning they are specifically evaluating patients suspected of having COVID-19. While these Respiratory Clinics are in specific areas just for those patients, urgent care centers are still open to see patients who need other services in their usual locations. Additional information about testing in Rhode Island is available at: www.health.ri.gov/covid/testing
COVID-19 Data Update The Rhode Island Department of Health (RIDOH) announced today that Rhode Island has 160 new cases of COVID-19. This brings Rhode Island's count to 1,082. RIDOH also announced two additional COVID-19 associated fatalities. These people were in their 80s and their 90s. Both people were nursing home residents. Rhode Island's number of COVID-19 associated fatalities is now 27. 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. 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 www.RIDelivers.com 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 www.health.ri.gov/covid, write to RIDOH.COVID19Questions@health.ri.gov, 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.
Get your flu shot, and make sure the people around you do the same.
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.