RI said to have ‘high transmission’ of virus; most cases, hospitalizations among unvaccinated


PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Rhode Island is in the red when it comes to coronavirus transmission.

With a rate of 103 new cases per 100,000 people over the past seven days, the state is now considered to have “high transmission” by the CDC’s standards.

On Monday, the R.I. Department of Health reported 400 new cases since data was last released on Friday and added 51 cases to previous daily totals.

However, in keeping with the recent trend, there were no COVID-19-related deaths over the weekend and hospitalizations declined to 27.

According to the Health Department, 85.6% of people hospitalized with COVID-19 symptoms since January 2021 were not vaccinated, while 10.7% were partially vaccinated and 3.7% were fully vaccinated.

“The vaccine, on the whole, helps you not get the virus, but if you do get the virus, the vaccine will almost certainty protect you from getting incredibly sick,” explained Dr. Laura Forman, chief of emergency medicine at Kent Hospital.

A 12 News analysis of the latest data from the Health Department and the CDC shows more than 64% of the state’s population is at least partially vaccinated and 59% is fully vaccinated.

In terms of cases, the Health Department’s data shows 91.5% of positive cases since January were unvaccinated, 6.6% were partially vaccinated and 1.9% were fully vaccinated.

Gov. Dan McKee’s office announced the state has reached a new milestone in the RI Gives Vax Challenge. With 15,000 doses having been administered since the program was launched earlier this month, McKee has scheduled a news conference for 10 a.m. Tuesday to reveal the 15 nonprofit organizations that will be awarded $10,000 grants.

12 News plans to stream the event live right here on WPRI.com.

The Health Department tweeted Monday that state-run test sites were experiencing delays due to an increased number of people showing up without an appointment.

Some testing sites do not require appointments, but health officials say making one is the best option since it reduces wait times and ensures easy access to results.

The Health Department also recommends that people who are not vaccinated get tested on a weekly basis.

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